In 1991 a group of women met to discuss how they could combat sexism in the punk scene, and the Riot Grrrl movement was born. These women were interested in fighting oppression and supporting each other, and a lot of fantastic, inspirational music, art and poetry was created as a result. Bands like Bikini Kill and Bratmobile created zines that helped spread their message worldwide. They let young women know they didn’t need to accept this.
25 years later and things have got better, but sexism is still a very real issue in the lives of women from all backgrounds. We’re made to feel like we can’t do things and face criticisms about our behaviour, how we dress and act. When we speak out about it, we’re made to believe it’s our fault.
Inspired by these women, who were heroes to our teenage selves, we decided to try and make a change ourselves, so we set up the group. It started small, but soon we had over 400 members and Firebug kindly offered us a room to hold a meeting. It was a success, and November’s meeting was our fifth. We’re also planning a Christmas Party.
The purpose of the group is to give local women a safe space where they could meet up with people with shared interests and talk about issues that affect them. It’s been great so far, and hopefully it will get bigger and better. We have a zine, regular meetups for things like crafts and music. We welcome new members from any background and meet on the last Wednesday of every month.
Check out our Facebook page ‘Leicester Riot Grrrls’ for more details.