Feminist Protest, Female Prisoners, Dealing with Death, Buffalo Gals and Single Muslim Mums
The old taunt has always been that feminists have no sense of humour. But young women are increasingly using wit and satire to poke fun at patriarchy and sexist attitudes. In French members of La Barbe don false beards, there have been sex strikes in Belgium, topless protest in Kiev, slutwalks around the world and in London the Muff March. Such antics may be hilarious, but what do they actually achieve? Only half of all women on remand in prison receive visits from their family, and the figures are no better who see their children while in jail according to the Prison Reform Trust. With only thirteen female prisons in the country many women are forced to serve their sentences far from home and contact with their family often breaks down as a result. The Trust says the answer is to impose custodial sentence on fewer women, many of whom serve only a short time in jail. A Muslim woman facing the challenges of being a single mother has created a Facebook page to support women who find themselves in a similar position. Misbah Akhtar created her Single Muslim Mums Facebook site earlier this year and it's gained followers around the world who are finding emotional support and advice amongst the online sisterhood. Felicity Finch meets The Buffalo Gals, who play the front-porch music of the early American settlers. And, in the past when someone died we would have worn mourning clothes or a black armband to let others know we had suffered a bereavement. But many of the old public rituals have disappeared and grief has become almost private. What's the best way to express sympathy to someone who is bereaved - a letter, a card, an email? Or perhaps a poem? Jackie Kay and Wendy Cope talk about the healing power of poetry.