Nanjing Peace Forum

We call for 1000 stories and ideas to be exhibited in Shenzhen | TA Voices

“The Story” 

//Our Beginnings// 

A person has a person's story, a family has a family's story, a group has a group's story, a gender has a gender's story, and the sum total of the stories we have heard since we were young constitutes our understanding of self, others and the world. 

The "IN+ Peace Women's Carnival" program launched a call for 1,000 women's stories and ideas a month ago, and we received stories, ideas and invitations to collaborate from different genders, ages, backgrounds, and regions, through which we saw the deep concern for "women's issues" in this era, whether from the perspective of women themselves or from the perspective of men. Through these stories, we read about women's courage, pain, confusion, struggle, but also resistance, change, transformation and a kind of strength and hope. 

Today, we have compiled some of these stories in the hope that we can penetrate the surface and even the stories themselves, and think about the problems and possible solutions at a more fundamental level. The call for stories is still ongoing, and we welcome you to click on the original article to share your stories. We will use such stories as prototypes for the creation and presentation of theater, photography, painting, installation art, and other possibilities, so that women's stories can be told, women's power can be seen, some prejudices can be broken, and some problems can be changed. 

*The images used in this article are the personal photographs of young artist Yang Yu, the copyright of which belongs to the photographer himself.



// Keywords: women's festival, courage //

"On the weekend before March 8th, I anxiously pondered, spent the night looking for posters and experiences and literature, created on my white jacket, printed posters that I could hang on my front and back, transcribed the meaning and significance of women's rights, the origins of Women's Day, and so on. I did it on Women's Day, standing there and reading out loud before everyone went to the small square for their morning reading, passing by looking my way, friends curiously looking through my notes, looking at my poster, discussing my dress, and some pointing at me. I wore this dress all day, and there were hesitations and insecurities and thoughts of giving up, but I did it anyway. /Mrs. Lee (Source: Personal experience)"


// Keywords:

Migrant women, space to speak // 

"During my internship, I organized a five-month family experience workshop for six migrant women. These migrant women from rural to urban areas were facing difficulties in integrating into the city, difficulties at work, and pressure in taking care of their children, but also had difficulties in having a chance to talk about them. Therefore, I used the family experience workshop as a medium to create a space for collective narratives, and I organized them to share with each other their life stories and family confusions. In the process of telling and listening, they had the opportunity to unload their physical and mental burdens, understand and support each other, and collide with each other for new thinking and action in the dialogues. //Mrs. Luo (Source: Personal experience)". 

//Keywords: school dropout, part-time job, son preference // 

"My hometown is in the Chaoshan area, where men are favored over women. At that time, every family in the village had to have at least two boys so that they wouldn't be looked down upon. In order to have one more boy, my mom had seven children, but in the end there was only one boy. When I was young, my family was poor, with little space and many children. The family's financial resources came from my father's fishing and my mother's housekeeping and farming. I was the second youngest of the children and had to do the housework and take care of my sisters at a very young age. 

My parents had very little time to spare, but when they did, they went to relatives' houses for tea and conversation. When mom was at home she was more likely to push us to do our chores and if we didn't do them properly, she would curse us, and bad words would come out in bunches, we looked like her enemies wanted us dead. Dad was at home but never interacted with the kids, like an invisible dad. 

When I was 4 years old, a typhoon collapsed our house. The family borrowed money from relatives to buy land and built two houses to live in. After a few years, the money we owed was paid off, but by then we had more children, so we borrowed money from relatives to build two more. A few years later, when my younger uncle got married, he was given two rooms. We seven children and our parents were crammed into the two rooms, and cooking was also done in them, which was very narrow. I hadn't graduated from elementary school yet, my family still owed money, and my sister was old enough to study, so my sister and I dropped out of school and went to work. My sister came out one year before me. 

I worked in a factory for ten years. When I was busy, I worked more than ten hours a day and overtime until late, but I was able to earn money. During the off-season, when the factory ran out of goods, I would feel uneasy because my mom would be upset if I didn't have money to take home. I came out to work at thirteen until I was twenty-four, and all the money I earned went to my mom. // Xiaoqi (Source: Guangtian Community Service and Research Center)" 

// Keywords: mother, anti-cancer // 

"When I received the news that my mother had contracted breast cancer during the 2020 outbreak, I, as a daughter, was of course shocked, followed by deep introspection: why did my mother fall ill so suddenly, did she take good care of herself while I was away from home, and was it really easy and happy for her to live without me? ..... Fortunately, I found the answers to these questions when I accompanied and recorded my mother's radiation and chemotherapy treatments. 

As a woman, wife, and mother, she has endured pressures that I can't imagine. Due to her inner strength and independent character, my mother hardly communicated her inner thoughts with her friends and relatives, but chose to carry and consume all the negative energy by herself (long-term depression and anxiety is also one of the triggers of breast cancer), which eventually led to her illness. During the time she spent with her mother, she met people from all over the world. The topic of "post-surgical treatment and maintenance of breast cancer" became the center of discussion between them and us (relatives). My mother's patients ranged in age from my age, when I was facing the prospect of having my breasts removed, to my late teens, when I was doing routine checkups and collecting medical reports unaccompanied. I was able to visually document my mothers' struggles and resilience while also experiencing them side by side. 

Breast cancer is the most common type of female malignant tumor, and nearly 300,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year in China. Such a huge number and the pain of radiotherapy inevitably puts many women into anxiety and fear, however, breast cancer can be prevented in advance by improving the diet structure, regulating the mood and work routine. Although I have shown my mother's physical changes during radiotherapy, such as red, swollen and ulcerated skin, hair loss, etc., my original intention was to use these photographs of my mother to show and praise the optimism and strength of all women with breast cancer who are fighting against the disease. /Yang Yu


// Keywords:

Diverse World, Ecological Conservation // 

"Because I grew up in the Amazon rainforest and my father is a rainforest ecologist. I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to follow my father into the rainforest and listen to the sounds of various animals such as macaws, howler monkeys in the distance, and numerous insects. Sometimes I would climb up into the trees, and sometimes I would burrow into some holes in the ground to look at the long and intricate root systems of some of the huge trees. I realized that there is so much in the rainforest that cannot be seen with the eye. There is more beyond what we can see. 

One day I asked my father, "Why are rainforests so important?" He replied, "Rainforests are really important, especially the Amazon rainforest - the largest rainforest in the world. Rainforests help control global temperature and climate, and they also help monitor the water cycle and the carbon cycle. These have a huge impact on our daily lives, on the air we breathe, on how it is circulated and cleaned, and on having the rainforest provide us with fresh water. In addition, rainforests are some of the most biodiverse ecosystems in the world." For me, this experience when I was a child left a lasting impact and made me want to continue to protect nature in my studies and work. 

But I do recognize that, unfortunately, rainforests and nature are being harmed, especially by human activities. Places like the Amazon rainforest are also facing the problem of decreasing forest area and deforestation. In fact, the reduction of tropical forests globally due to agricultural development and food supply, especially palm oil, soy, and beef, has reached nearly 70%. Recognizing this, I have spent the last decade working with different NGOs, governments and industry actors trying to find solutions to the global forest loss problem. At the same time, as an opportunity to do so, I have led different industry players to visit and research in tropical forest areas. /Isabel NepstadAmerican girl, co-founder of the Wild Voices Nature Changemakers program (Source: NJPF)"


// Keywords: male-female division of labor //

"In my family of origin and throughout my upbringing, there has always been a division of labor between the man and the woman. When I got married and had children, I took care of all the household chores, working during the day and taking care of the kids and doing housework when I got home from work, and my husband was never involved in the household chores. This division of labor in the family has lasted for a long time. 

It was not until recently that my consciousness slowly awakened. Through attending workshops and coming across books on feminism, I have come to realize that it is not easy to be a woman, and that I have to fight for a lot of things on my own. Breaking an old balance is bound to be a certain conflict, but it is inevitable to have this process for the betterment of the future. 

Driven by this realization, the division of labor in our home is now moving forward in breaking the old balance. I have pushed to re-alter the division of labor for everyone in the family, and although Mr. is extremely reluctant, he is slowly changing as he is held hostage by all the family members and gradually taking on some of the chores in the house. //Spring Equinox (Source: Kwong Tin Community Service and Research Center)"

// Keywords:

Accompanying mom, self-growth


 "In 2020, when my family was stranded in Hainan due to the epidemic, we saw the stories of a group of accompanying moms and wanted to make a documentary so that these ordinary women could be seen for what they represent: hope, persistence, hard work, and constant self-growth and breakthroughs. /Ms. Xu 

// Keywords: sexual harassment // 

"Being sexually harassed runs through all stages of life, and it is sad to say that there is always an impressive amount of sexual harassment at every stage. As you can imagine, the sexual harassment women face throughout their lives is overwhelming. 

Elementary school: there was a repeat student sitting next to me in the sixth grade class, always taking the opportunity to pretend to accidentally touch my lower body, I was too shy to report to the teacher, and several times I went up to the stage to report to the teacher could not say, with other things to put off the past. 

Junior high school: Physics teacher began to lecture very serious, but soon to the end of the midterm, he began to take the opportunity to raise questions on the girls sitting in the back row of touching the face, I once stood up to answer the question just sat down, was his greasy hands touching the chin, nausea for several days. 

University: summer vacation in Shanghai, a famous institution of higher learning classes, no class time to the gym swimming, deep water swimming swim was held under the water. Extremely panicked, I hurriedly swam to the shallow water and stood up to look for people, but the result was that there were too many people in the pool and I didn't find them. 

Graduation: graduation trip in Guangxi, in a small store focused on selecting cosmetics, suddenly was elbowed in my chest pressed, at first thought it was a lot of people I was squeezed, raised his head and looked around and found that few customers at this time, just reacted to just a salty pig's hand. I saw the person who touched me feigned calm and walked to the door, I slowly walked over and grabbed his hand and pushed him hard, he should not expect me to fight back, shocked and ran away. /Mrs. Xu"



"IN+ Peace Women's Carnival" 1000 stories and ideas collection activity is continuing, if you have anything to say, click on the original text, we have been classified according to individuals, enterprises, social organizations, etc., you can fill in their ideas and contact information and then submit to us, within two months, we will complete the initial screening of the idea, and then notify you!

2024-03-13 04:45:08

No. 41, Beijing East Road, Xuanwu District, Nanjing

Nanjing China