There are a million different ways women are forced to move through the world in the name of self preservation.

We stand with backs to walls, avoid the middle pole of the tube, wear trainers for traction. We are told to hold ground, but make space for people, for men, who pass us on the street.

We carry bags in hand, sharp keys jutting out between white knuckled fists. …

Rishi Sunak’s statement on retraining in the Arts Sector was yet another blow to an industry desperately trying to pull itself up from its knees.

As the country’s economy plunges deeper into crisis mode amid mounting unemployment, job insecurity and a pandemic that has demanded we abandon an element of society many thought they’d never miss; rainy day cinema, anniversary dates spent among greasepaint and boards, Saturday nights jostled shoulder to shoulder, feet sticking to floors as a bass thumps through your heart, ribs rattling.

In those heady early days of locked parks and daily walks we watched the archived…

Early Lockdown, our routine one of long-shadows and two wheels, watching the streetlights switch on and riding figure of eight on empty streets, no hands, free-wheeling. Those beginning days we listened to music and danced, we baked cakes that didn’t rise, trying recipes and turning pages, long since curled, as we unfurled before each other, no longer just Son and Mama, school child and woman, but our own selves, rediscovered, surprisingly older, suddenly wiser.

The death of George Floyd burst our bubble with the violent force of a no-knock warrant.

I don’t know whether it was because that preceding time…

Australia, oh Australia

I’ve been critical of Australia for a long time. I’ve side eyed those who’ve said they’re heading to the other-side to work, to live, to marry down under.

“You know what they do there, right? The racism? The denial? The children fleeing war to be marooned on an island and left swinging in nooses as the sun goes down on that oh-so-close paradise.” A paradise not lost, not yet, but barred. Barred to them in their scarves and molten skin and song of different languages. …

The Brexit Referendum wasn't democratic. It was won on lies, corruption and xenophobia, promising more money for the NHS, more jobs and more homes.

The Conservative Manifesto, forever claiming Brexit is the answer to all ills still has no intention of investing in public services. They. Do. Not. Care. About. You. Regardless of whether you work 7 days a week and still can't afford a private rent (they probably own your home and hike your fee), it doesn't matter if you're sick or dying. They don't care if you're fleeing war. They don't care if you're trafficked in. They don't…

It’s soon to be Father’s Day. A Sunday of backyard barbecues and slogan-ed socks, Lynx sets and engraved beer glasses and “World’s Number 1 Dad.”

My son hasn’t ever really asked about his father. That genetic contributor of height and eye colour. The patron of long limbs that have my eight-year-old to the centre of my chest and those eyes of cocoa that stare, unflinching, even in the harshest of lights into my own glassy ocular.

It’s been he and I since the beginning. From the moment of his conception he was mine, all mine. And I have revelled in…

The annals of history would have us believe that women’s bodies have been policed by men for no other reason than for our own good.

Weak, feeble minded, hysterical women need men — great and powerful and decisive men — dictating the decisions that ultimately have no bearing — no consequence — on them and the daily discourse of their own lives. From expected, acceptable femininity to rules and regulations of menstruation, sexual pleasure, childbirth — the male gaze and dictation knows no bounds, and still today whether a woman has the right to choose the identity of ‘mother’.

With…

Lourdes Valentino

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