Vera Project Hosts “Party Against the Patriarchy”

On Friday, Seattle’s Vera Project was packed with Seattle’s hippest and best- dressed youths, there for Itchy B’s Feminist Club’s fourth Party Against the Patriarchy. These shows aim to provide a space for young people of all identities and backgrounds to gather, dance and express themselves in a safe and inclusive setting. The theme this year was intersectionality, and the necessity of intersectionality in feminism.

SAMIRA SHOBEIRI • THE SPECTATOR
SAMIRA SHOBEIRI • THE SPECTATOR

Emma Lee Toyoda performing at the Party Against Patriarchy at the Vera Project.

“We just wanted to highlight the fact that although sexism is a really large obstacle in many of people’s lives, there are people who are also forced to carry the brunt of racism and homophobia. And in order to make progress in the name of feminism, and to be a good ally, it is crucial that we educate ourselves and listen to what people have to say,” said Anna Smith, a member of Itchy B’s Feminist club and event hostess.

The main attraction of the event is the musical line up. This year’s Party Against the Patriarchy featured the Hardly Boys, Twice Nice, and Emma Lee Toyoda.

When asked about her decision to perform at the show, Toyoda said “I think especially in my case, as an asian american woman, I don’t see a lot of that represented in the media, and I don’t see a lot of that represented in the music industry,” Toyoda said. “My goal is to get my face out there, and just be the representation I wish I had in high school or middle school wanting to play music but just didn’t see anyone who looked like me.”

As for ways young people can stay involved and continue supporting intersectional feminism, “Come out to events, get your voice heard, listen, listen to people of color, listen to femmes of color,” Toyoda said. Opening the performance, Emma Lee Toyoda performed songs solo off her first studio released album, “Sewn Me Anew.” Accompanied by only her guitar, Toyoda’s songs focus on anything from the pains of romantic angst, to the freedom of getting to live on your own and make your own decisions. Next was female-fronted surf punk group, Twice Nice, who’s group member’s younger age reflected the colorful, youthful energy of the Vera Project and everyone there. Lastly was the Hardly Boys, who describe themselves as friendship punk, closed the gig. All artists and their discographies can be found at bandcamp.com.

In addition to the main stage, there were artists and bands selling merch and posters, zines, and a wall for attendees to write their own definition of feminism, and a guest speaker from Young Women Empowered Seattle. Itchy B’s Feminist Club, a club at Seattle Center school that orchestrates this event, put out their own zine about the feminism at the event, including original art, poetry, and writing.

“We try to hold to this idea of radical inclusivity,” said guest speaker and YWE Volunteer mentor Mira B. “When I think of the intersections, I want you to know that I see you. I think you’re beautiful, and I really appreciate that you’re doing work to create this space.”

As for advice for anyone trying to be a better intersectional feminist, Mira shared her feelings on the importance of being wrong, and learning to change to promote equality and equity for one’s peers.

“If I could wish for anything, it’s that in my trying to be intersectional in my feminism, and in my trying to be an ally, trying to be gentle with myself when I inevitably mess up because I can’t know your lived experiences and I can’t always be right. So at times when you make that mistake from not understanding where someone else is coming from, it’s worth it because of who you’re choosing to surround yourself with and how you’re going out in the world,” Mira said.

Madeline may be reached at
mmesa@su-spectator.com

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