Through my program with IES Abroad, I was afforded the opportunity to attend "Discover IES Abroad" events that showcased different aspects of the countries where students were placed, including Spain, Italy, and Austria, to name a few. Along with my class, I attended three Discover IES Abroad events. I attended one event from Spain, one from Italy, and one from Argentina. The Argentinian Discover IES Abroad Event that I attended was a lecture about the Feminist Movement in Argentina and the Latin American Region. The lecture was given by a vital member of the Movement and included a presentation with actual pictures and videos of protests and initiatives that took place.
I attended a cooking class for the Barcelona event, making a typical dish there called the Tortilla española or Spanish omelette. The event in Italy was a walking fashion tour highlighting the merchandising that brands use in popular shopping areas there. The lecture on the Argentinian movement was my favorite Discover IES Abroad Event to attend by far. I enjoyed it so much because in my personal life, I engage in a lot of advocacy work through a few organizations that I work with, and I have a strong academic interest in policy. Aside from that, I am a woman, and the Movement, if I were in that area, would have a direct impact on my life and how I live it.
On June 24th here in the United States, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, a significant case that federally protected a woman’s right to get an abortion for fifty years. With the event falling on July 5th, it felt like the lecture came at the perfect time. During the lecture, Cecilia Palmeiro, one of the founder members of the feminist collective Ni Una Menos, told us about how the movement came to be, how it was executed, and how it made an impact on her community in Argentina and surrounding countries. She spoke about the hardships that they faced and how they overcame adversity as a collective. The movement started with a small group of women and expanded to include thousands fighting for the same cause. Their movement began because of the violent killings of young girls in Argentina. It later expanded to include other issues like reproductive rights and, now, LGBTQ+ rights.
I, along with the rest of the attendees, inquired our lecturer about her opinion on the situation happening in the United States. Despite our uneasiness, she assured us that her case was very similar when she and a group of peers started the movement in Argentina. She encouraged us to take baby steps and use our voices despite any discouragement we may feel. This event was definitely needed and came at the right time in my personal life. I was able to take the encouragement I got from attending the talk and speaking with Ms. Palmeiro and go fight for my own reproductive rights a couple of weeks ago on the steps of my State Capitol.
One day, I hope to visit Argentina to witness some of the lasting remnants that her movement had on the country and its women.
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Aliana Stanley is a Senior at Spelman College in Atlanta, GA. She is a Psychology and Political Science who plans to attend law school after graduation. In her free time, Aliana likes to spend time with friends and catch up on the latest trending Netflix show. She has a passion for helping others and learning new things. As she goes through life, she hopes to visit at least 6 of the 7 continents and be fluent in 4 languages other than English!