International Conference in Gothenburg/Sweden - Why is Secularism Essential?

8 March 2009

Why is Secularism essential?

Organization for Women's Liberation is organizing a one day conference in commemoration of 8 March, International women's day on the impact of religion on the situation and status of women. Why is secularism essential? In this conference veteran women's right activists and scholars are coming together to analyze the devastating effects of rise of religious movements and religion's influence in the running of state in many countries on the situation of women: the effect of catholic church, orthodox church, Judaism and political Islam will be discussed.

We are pleased to announce that following organisations have supported our conference:

Centre for Inquiry

European Feminist Initiative

International Network against Honour Crimes

Women for Peace (Sweden)

Guest speakers so far confirmed:

Homa Arjomand; coordinator of No Sharia Campaign; Canada/Iran

Soad Baba Aissa; European Feminist Initiative; France/Algeria

Imma Barbarossa; Partito della Rifondazione Communista, Italy

Julie Bindle Journalist; a founder of feminist law reform NGO Justice for Women, and of the Feminist Coalition against Prostitution; England

Malene Busk; women's right activist, Center for Inquiry; Denmark

Buthina Canaan Khoury; Film maker; Palestine

Beth Ciesielski; Centre for Inquiry, Rumania/USA

Hugo Esterla; Centre for Inquiry, Italy/Argentina

Caroline Fourest; writer; columnist, activist and a Member of Libre Pense; France

Maria Hagberg; MD in social work and chair of Network against Honour Crimes; Sweden

Lilian Halls French; sociologist, President of the European Feminist Initiative; France

Boriana Jonsson; Member of the Coordinating Committee of European Feminist Initiative, Bulgaria/Sweden

Parvin Kaboli; coordinator of White Carnation; Sweden/Iran

Khanum R. Lateef, manager Asuda women's center Suleimania; Iraq/Kurdistan

Azar Majedi; President of OWL, writer; England/Iran

Azza Kamel Mohamed Abdel Meguid, Appropriate Communication Techniques for Development, ACT, Egypt

Lia Nadaraia; President Feminist Club, Georgia

Layla Naffa Hamarneh; Director of Projects Arab Women Organisation of Jordan

Karim N. Noori; Mäns nätverk mot hedersförtryck, Sweden/Iran

Frances Raday: Chair, Israeli Association for Freedom of Science, Religion and Culture; Israel

Nina Sankari; Polish Rationalist Organisation and EFI Poland

Sabine Salmon; President of Femmes Solidaires; France

Lisa Sorush; women's right activist; Afghanistan

Susana Tampieri; writer, women's right activist, Argentina

Nawal Yazeji, researcher and activist on women issues, Syria

Moderator: Maryam Kousha; editor of Women's Liberation,

We invite all concerned feminists, secularists and human right activists to participate in these events. We need to demonstrate a show of secularist force against religious inroads in the society.

Date: 7 March 2009

Venue: Folkets Hus Göteborg
Olof Palmes Plats


Admission: 100 SKr or 10 Euros

Details of the events will be published as soon as they become available.

For more information or to register please write to:;


Azar Majedi:+44 (0)7886973423

Shahla Nouri: +46(0)737262622

Medusahuset Göteborg

Or visit our website:


Anonymous said…

Irrelevant to this topic, but: Is this guy serious do you think? Or is he being darkly ironic?
Stephen Law said…
Serious. I think.

There are many weird people out there.
Anonymous said…
America is constitutionally secular, yet it has one of the highest number of religious folk in the developed world.

Doesn't secularism create a vacuum and thereby draws up religiosity?

In the UK the Church of England is lame but it does fill the void...