We are thrilled to announce that plans for this one-day event and digital programme bringing together activism and art to confront and change attitudes towards sexual violence are taking shape. We cannot announce the entire programme yet, but here are some highlights:
Actress and Model Emily Ratajkowski to discuss her debut book My Body, an investigation into body politics and the fetishisation of women and girls
Opening session to address scale of sexual violence in the UK with Birkbeck’s Professor Joanna Bourke; Founder Of Black Minds Rachel Nwokoro; Best Selling Author Winnie M Li; And Activist Payzee Mahmod
Alongside WOW Founder Jude Kelly, other speakers include Soma Sara Founder of Everyone’s Invited; Poet In Residence For Consent Collective Tanaka Mhishi, authors Laura Bates and Rachel Thompson, Academic, Dr Rabiya Majeed-Ariss, and podcaster Sangeeta Pillai
Digital programme To Include Phoebe Patey-Ferguson’s Live, Laugh, Rage! – An Online Space To Rage
The festival will take place at Battersea Arts Centre on Saturday 27 November!
If you want to know more:
The one-day festival will include a powerful state of the nation opening session addressing the scale of sexual violence, with some of the world’s foremost experts, academics and artists including WOW Founder Jude Kelly; prizewinning author, Professor Joanna Bourke; Founder of Black Minds and UK Slam champion, Rachel Nwokoro; best selling author and survivor, Winnie M Li; and Humanitarian and activist, Payzee Mahmod.
The festival will thread together some of the most urgent conversations, covering everything from the lack of inclusive service provisions, to consent, sexual violence online, medical harms and rape as a weapon of war. These talks will be led by a host of speakers including Soma Sara, the Founder of Everyone’s Invited who brought school sexual harassment to the fore; and poet in residence for the Consent Collective, Tanaka Mhishi. Also included in the programme will be authors, Laura Bates and Rachel Thompson, academic, Dr Rabiya Majeed-Ariss and award winning podcaster, Sangeeta Pillai.
Concluding the day will be an evening ticketed event with the actor, model and writer Emily Ratajkowski. In conversation with WOW’s CEO and Founder Jude Kelly, this candid discussion will see Ratajkowski speak in London for one-night only about her new book My Body, exploring what it means to be a woman in a world that consumes, commodifies and violates women’s bodies, and the contempt that often accompanies taking back ownership of the narrative.
The digital programme running alongside the festival will include Live, Laugh, RAGE!, an online event hosted byperformance artist and academic Phoebe Patey-Ferguson alongside authors and activists to be announced. This session will provide a space to rage about the tangled mess of systemic violence and how it enables and perpetuates violence against us. The digital event will explore if rage can be used as a force for imagining and enacting a different world and if righteous rage is essential to our collective survival.
Tickets are going on sale! Buy them HERE.
LOTS MORE TO COME!
Founder and CEO of The WOW Foundation Jude Kelly said: “Our WOW Festivals across the world are famous for candid conversations so we’ve created the Shameless Festival! to open up vital discussion around sexual violence. It’s a day of action, but also a day to come together and build community. I’m thrilled to be concluding the day in conversation with Emily Ratajkowski, whose new book demonstrates the power of taking back ownership of your own stories. There’s great solidarity in sharing stories, and Shameless Festival! will do that in a joyful and powerful day of exploration.”
Professor Joanna Bourke, Principal Investigator of Birkbeck’s SHaME Project commented: “Sexual violence is a global problem that needs to be addressed by us all. The Shameless! Festival encourages new ways of thinking and acting on how we can forge worlds where sexual harms have been eliminated. We want to hear your voices.”
Jeremy Farrar, Director of The Wellcome Trust: “We are delighted to be part of Shameless! Festival!. Wellcome prides itself on aiding those that have the potential to improve health challenges worldwide, which is why it is so crucial to be supporting this unique festival and its important role in addressing the global crisis of sexual violence. “