Dear AAPF Family,
The events of the past year have underscored the urgency of using intersectionality to build a more equitable world for people of all genders, races and nationalities.
During a time of global upheaval, we’ve been buoyed and energized by our tremendous community, and all of us at AAPF are deeply grateful for your solidarity and goodwill. We tip our hats to you, our backers whose support is the cornerstone of all that we do. It’s your engagement that enables all of the triumphs summarized here, and we couldn’t do it without you. With your help, we organize, we bring people together, we raise awareness, we develop leadership, we mobilize arts for activism, we inspire. We fight against the rollback in civil rights, justice, and every effort undertaken since 2016 to reverse the hard fought victories of the past, and we thank all of our supporters for making it possible.
If you’d like to see this work continue to grow in 2019, we ask that you make a tax deductible donation to AAPF today. Your support powers our fight and any contribution makes a difference.
As 2018 winds down, we want to recap the ways we’ve been fighting for intersectional justice on all fronts this year. We are excited that you are on this journey with us, and we hope that the progress we’ve made will inspire your continued support in 2019 and beyond!
Say Her Name Campaign
#SayHerName Fourth Anniversary and Day of Remembrance
Earlier this month, we commemorated the four-year anniversary of the Say Her Name campaign. AAPF first marched under the banner of Black women killed by the police on December 14, 2014 at the NYC Millions March, an anti-police brutality demonstration fueled in part by grand jury decisions not to indict police officers for the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown. Marching together with 30,000 protesters, we urged others to join us to “say her name” and uplift the stories of Black women, girls and femmes who were killed by the police, and whose names often got excluded from dominant narratives around police violence.
Since that day, #SayHerName has emerged as a rallying cry around the globe, demanding that violence against Black women is treated with the same urgency and awareness as violence against their brothers.
To acknowledge the four-year milestone and pay homage to the lives that should have been, AAPF released a new video highlighting the incredible members of the #SayHerName Mothers Network, and issued a statement addressing the state of the movement four years in.
Say Her Name Families
First brought together in 2015 to attend the first ever #SayHerName Vigil in Union Square, the Mothers of Say Her Name are a group of Black women who have all lost daughters to police violence and have organized to collectively demand accountability. Since then, the Mothers Network has joined together on a number of occasions, marching at the Women’s March on Washington, lobbying for police reform on Capitol Hill, and joining together for several focus groups and planning sessions to strategize around the initiative and to assess the needs of new family members who’ve lost their daughters to police violence.
In March 2018, the group gathered for its third annual #SayHerName Mothers Weekend in New York City. As the movement continues to grow, the weekends provide mothers who have all lost daughters to police violence with the opportunity to form connections with each other and build a community of support and collective action. Among many other activities that weekend, the mothers were featured in the talkback following the matinee performance of Eve Ensler’s “In the Body of the World” at Manhattan Theatre Club. Later that month, the #SayHerName Campaign and Mothers Network were featured in a video by NowThis!.
BYP’s National Week of Action
This year, we collaborated with several other organizations and individuals to further the work of #SayHerName and demand a gender-inclusive understanding of police violence. In June 2018, a dozen grassroots organizations led by Black Youth Project 100 came together to stage a nationwide Say Her Name Week of Action. Other partners included Black Lives Matter Global Network, BlackOUT Collective, Freedom, Inc., INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence, Southerners on New Ground, Solutions Not Punishment Collaborative, Survived and Punished, Transgender Gender Variant and Intersex Justice Project, UndocuBlack Network, and Women With a Vision.
Social Justice SOS & Reconstructing Our Democracy
Three days after the 2016 US presidential election, AAPF brought together 13 social justice leaders from across the country, including Alicia Garza, Robin Kelly, Dallas Goldtooth, Eve Ensler, and Mary Frances Berry, to make sense of the devastating election outcome and chart a path forward in a virtual town hall called Social Justice SOS: What Happened, What's Coming and Why We Must Join Together Against Hate. The conversation that followed was profoundly enlightening and galvanizing, and was later released as a report.
On the one-year anniversary of our initial SOS conversation, AAPF hosted Social Justice SOS Revisited, an effort to take stock of what transpired under 45’s first year in office, and to strategize around how progressives can most effectively challenge and confront legislative and physical attacks on marginalized communities.
This year, the SOS series traveled down to Atlanta, Georgia. Reconstructing Our Democracy: A Midterms Post-Mortem & Call to Action took place at the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum four days after the midterm elections, and featured the voices of pioneering activists and scholars such as Carol Anderson, Barbara Arnwine, Helen Butler, Angélica Cházaro, Brittney Cooper, Daniel HoSang, Robin Kelley, Nikhil Pal Singh, Azadeh Shahshahani, Monica Simpson, and Tim Wise. The conversation was moderated by Kimberlé Crenshaw. The insightful conversation grappled with the immediate aftermath of the results and illuminated the possible pathways forwards.
As Nikhil Pal Singh observed at the Carter Library, “we live in a period where we’re seeing the destruction of intermediating institutions---like unions for example---where people got information about their interests that could help them to form better political judgment.” Responding to precisely that gap, the SOS series facilitates collaboration between some of the country’s most eminent thinkers to vigorously reimagine the advancement of democratic values in a time of unrest. It was particularly affecting to engage a community galvanized Stacey Abram’s historic campaign. Though there was understandable frustration and disappointment with the outcome of the race for the Georgia Governor’s mansion, we felt nourished by the resilience, ingenuity and hope that emanated from the dynamic conversation, and from the community members from across the region who showed up in soaring numbers to sell out the event.
Her Dream Deferred
At the end of each March, in honor of Women's History Month and the UN’s International Decade for People of African Descent, AAPF hosts Her Dream Deferred, a weeklong series of activities focused on elevating the crises facing Black women and girls. Since 2015, AAPF has partnered with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand to proclaim the last week of March to be Black Women’s History Week through Congressional Declaration. In 2018, Senator Kamala Harris joined the declaration.
2018 marked the 4th Annual Her Dream Deferred, and for the first time, it was held in Washington DC. The week kicked off with a #SayHerName activist happy hour at Busboys and Poets, and an arts and activism workshop at the Google Headquarters, where three of our Artists in Residence guided 50 women of all ages through sessions in song, dance, acting, and meditation that uplifted the legacy of Harriet Tubman in a program called “Recovering Harriet: An Interactive Evening of Arts and Action.” The evening functioned as a condensed incarnation of our Breaking Silence summer camp. Each participant was able to fine-tune a creative contribution to a short play written by Kimberlé Crenshaw called Harriet. For the final hour of this session, participants came together to perform on stage alongside AAPF staff members and professional actors. Several of our workshop participants joined us the following night at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture as performers in Harriet’s Daughters: An Evening of Conversation and Celebration.
We concluded the week with a sold out and widely streamed panel entitled: “From Birth Control to Death: Facing Black Women’s Maternal Mortality”. The event drew upon the insights of scholarly experts, community organizers, lawyers, and policy advocates to respond to the staggering mortality rates that plague prospective Black mothers. A closed-door roundtable session with panellists, community members and experts at the Institute for Women’s Policy Research followed. The roundtable served as an effective way to debrief, identify future areas for research, and discuss possibilities for further collaborative work.
We realize that intersectional oppression is not just a US problem, and that the crises facing us here are inextricably linked to those facing marginalized people abroad. In 2018, we collaborated with partners in the UK, EU, in the Americas and the Caribbean. We coordinated an intensive course at the London School of Economics on Intersectional Politics, which PhD candidates from universities across London attended. Also in the UK, we led a master course on Intersectionality at the How the Light Gets In Philosophy Festival in Hay-On-Wye in Wales; anchored a session on Critical Race Theory at the Race and Shakespeare Conference hosted at Shakespeare’s Globe in London; and facilitated a workshop on critical race theory and intersectionality with UK scholar Kehinde Andrews. Over the summer, E.D. Crenshaw lectured at the the International School of Transnational Decolonial Black Feminism in the Americas, held in Brazil, and AAPF hosted its annual Social Justice Writers’ Retreat in Jamaica. We continue to engage in generative collaborations with our sister institute, the Center for Intersectional Justice in Germany.
Intersectionality Matters Podcast
This past November, we announced and released a special preview episode of, a brand new podcast from AAPF, Intersectionality Matters!, which is scheduled to premiere in January 2019. Hosted by Kimberlé Crenshaw, the podcast is an idea travelogue that brings the concept of intersectionality to life by highlighting the work of leading activists, artists, and scholars. The podcast will explore the hidden dimensions of some of today’s most pressing issues and help listeners understand politics, the law, social movements, and even their own lives in deeper, more nuanced ways.
Featuring on-the-ground interviews with some of the world's most innovative activists, artists, and scholars, each episode explores a different topic through an intersectional lens, ranging from the resistance against Trumpism to grassroots activism in Brazil and the Congo to #SayHerName and the future of the #MeToo movement.
Check out our patreon site here: patreon.com/intersectionalitymatters
Subscribe and rate us on iTunes here: bit.ly/intersectionalitymatters
Research & Public Education Collaborations with CISPS
Recent months have seen an expansion of activities at AAPF’s sister organization, the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies (CISPS), at Columbia Law School. As part of its mission to facilitate intellectual dialogue between innovative intersectionality scholars and integrate intersectional research and analysis into policy debates and social justice advocacy, CISPS held two full-house events in the fall semester at Columbia. The first, Say Her Name: Marielle Franco - Intersectional Fatalities Across the Americas, was an incisive exchange between CISPS Executive Director Kimberlé Crenshaw and Jurema Werneck, the Director of Amnesty International in Brazil. The event provided the public with an entree into a riveting conversation between two pioneering Black woman feminist and antiracist activists. Their dialogue covered the recent assassination of Marielle Franco, a Black Brazilian feminist LGBT activist and Councillor in Rio De Janeiro and the pursuit of justice for persons victimized by intersectional violence in Brazil and throughout the Americas.
The second event was a panel entitled Asian Americans & Affirmative Action | Understanding SFFA v. Harvard which featured experts on affirmative action and Asian American issues, where they discussed the SFFA v. Harvard litigation in the context of historicizing challenges to affirmative action and the relationship between affirmative action and Asian Americans. Organized with CISPS graduate researcher Vincent Wong, the panel challenged myths and misinformation about how race-conscious admissions processes at universities like Columbia and Harvard are conducted. Both audiences saw a diverse mix of Columbia students, from the law school to Barnard, faculty and the general public. These events showcased CISPS’ unique capacity to curate and stoke pointed debate around topical issues with a cutting-edge intersectional lens.
Public Education Initiatives
Public education and thought leadership are key to AAPF’s work. This year we have used interviews, op-eds, statements, videos, and the launch of a new podcast series to raise awareness around issues pertaining to intersectionality, race, racism, and the law. Below is a partial list of these activities.
Awards and Recognition
AAPF Executive Director Kimberlé Crenshaw has been named the recipient of a wide array of awards and honors that reflect her commitment to legal scholarship, intersectional advocacy and women’s rights.
Gittler Prize - Brandeis University (October 2017)
Edith I. Spivack Award - New York County Lawyers Association (November 2017)
Honorary Doctorate of Laws - Smith College (May 2018)
Celebrating Women Award - New York Women’s Foundation (May 2018)
Honoree - A Call to Men (November 2018)
Elected Fellow - American Academy of Political and Social Science (December 2018)