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The Invaluable Power of Women: The Heritage of Joan Ferrier


This event was held on September 30, 2021. To watch the livestream, click here.

What do you know about the history of intersectional feminism in the Netherlands? As early as the 1980s, women from diverse backgrounds united in the Black, Migrant, and Refugee Women’s Movement. On Thursday, September 30, 2021, as part of Fellow
Tamara Hartman‘s (2020 John Lewis Fellowship) Action Project, we highlighted the story and legacy of one extraordinary woman.

Joan Ferrier (1953-2014) was a pioneer in intersectional feminism. Ferrier’s work with a.o. E-Quality, the United Nations, and Stichting Slavernijverleden stemmed from a lifelong passion for the emancipation of Black women and Women of Color. Ferrier worked tirelessly for the integration of cross-disciplinary thinking into Dutch institutions and policies. Through her work, she made an indispensable contribution to the Black, Migrant, and Refugee Women’s Movement of the 1980s and 1990s in the Netherlands. 

This event is an ode to Ferrier’s work, life, and her contribution to the unique Black, Migrant, and Refugee Women’s Movement. Her work is of unparalleled value to this day and a source of inspiration for today’s anti-racist women’s movement. 

Gloria Wekker, Emerita Professor of Gender and Ethnicity at Utrecht University, gave a talk on the neglected contributions of the Black, Migrant, and Refugee Women’s Movement. Kathleen Ferrier, former politician, chair of the Dutch Unesco Commission, and sister of Joan Ferrier shared her memories of Joan. 

There were also contributions from Kaouthar Darmoni, director of Atria, Hans Bellaart, senior researcher and coordinator of Kennisplatform Integratie & Samenleving at the Verwey-Jonker Instituut and former colleague of Joan Ferrier and Maayke Botman, researcher, program advisor Oranje Fonds and former employee of E-Quality. 

This event was provided with an interpreter of Dutch Sign Language