This interview marathon offers an in-depth and intimate conversation with some of the keynote speakers of Celebrating Dissent. They share their personal stories. What drives them in their professional lives and how are they trying to make a difference through their work?
All of the speakers have made huge sacrifices in order to live their lives according to their own ideals. Their believes have cost them their personal safety and the possibility to live in the country where they were born. Nonetheless, they continue their fight against oppression, for equal rights and women’s rights.
Every hour one speaker will be interviewed by a programmemaker of De Balie. During the marathon it is possible to stretch your legs and walk in and out. Guests are invited to bring food and drinks from De Balie’s restaurant to the interviews.
To see the time scedule, click on ‘tickets’
Inna Shevchenko is the leader of FEMEN, topless activists against various manifestations of patriarchy, including dictatorship, religion, and the sex industry. She was kidnapped and threatened by the Belarus KGB in 2011 and was given political asylum in France. During her speech on 14 February 2015 a terrorist opened fire in the lobby of where the debate took place. Surviving the attack, Shevchenko later said, “Liberal voices should be louder than Kalashnikovs”.
Maryam Namazie is an Iranian-born writer and activist. She is the Spokesperson for Fitnah – Movement for Women’s Liberation, One Law for All and the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain. The Islamic regime of Iran’s media outlets has called Namazie ‘immoral and corrupt’ and she has been barred and no platformed for speaking out against Islam and Islamism and defending the right to apostasy and blasphemy.
Taslima Nasrin is an award-winning writer, physician, and activist, known for her powerful writings on women oppression and unflinching criticism of religion, despite forced exile and multiple fatwas calling for her death.
Zineb El Rhazoui is a Moroccan-born French journalist. She used to be a journalist of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, where she was absent on the day of the murderous attack. After that she became the most protected woman in France. She is a passionate critic of Islam and a prominent secularist.
Saif-Ul-Malook is Asia Bibi’s lawyer. Asia Bibi, a Christian woman, was on death row for eight years accused of blasphemy after a quarrel with Muslim neighbours. Saif ul-Malook successfully defended Ms Bibi and she was released on appeal in 2018. After her release, he received death threats and had to flee.