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Five reasons why Equality Now’s “We Change the Rules” podcast is a must-listen for feminists everywhere

It’s 2024, yet in every part of the world, women and girls continue to be treated as second-class citizens under the law. It’s time to change the rules.

Last September, Equality Now brought together a diverse range of activists, academics, and legal experts from across the international gender equality and human rights movements for our latest podcast, We Change the Rules. Our host Samira Ahmed spoke to our guests about the legacy and future of gender inequality in the law and the activists and movements driving change in their regions.

Here are five reasons why We Change the Rules should be on your list of must-listen podcasts:

1: Hear from global icons who have spearheaded women’s rights movements.

The podcast takes audiences through social rights movements as far back as the 1960s, featuring world-renowned activist Gloria Steinem and South Africa’s leading LGBTQ+ advocate and filmmaker Beverley Ditsie, who adamantly fought for gay rights amidst deep-rooted racial tensions in the country and at the Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995 in Beijing.

It also features women who’ve successfully held top government positions and created space for women’s empowerment across different sectors, including former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, former Deputy President of South Africa Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and Jamaican Commissioner and President of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights Margarette May Macaulay.

2: The six-episode podcast provides a holistic view of discrimination in the law.

Samira Ahmed kicks off the podcast with a deep dive into the history of sex and gender discrimination in the law, exploring the legacy of colonial legal systems founded on legal inequality in regions ranging from Pakistan and Malaysia to Sierra Leone and Jamaica. 

The podcast then moves to the Beijing Platform for Action, the commitments made by world leaders to achieve gender equality globally, and the progress that has been made since. It also navigates opposing forces in the form of patriarchal structures and religious backlashes, which curb progress toward gender equality. 

3: We Change the Rules explores intersectionality in gender inequality.

As Harvard Law Professor Michele Goodwin reflects on her experiences of racism coupled with gender discrimination in the US, Beverley Ditsie sheds light on similar struggles in her activism during South Africa’s apartheid era. We revisit historical turning points to contextualize the roadblocks to gender equality, highlighting its connection to racism, religious extremism, and patriarchy.

4: It talks about global moments that transformed the landscape for women’s rights movements.

As Equality Now’s Board Member Omar Samra explores the #MeToo movement in Egypt, we listen to actress Thelma Fardin about her personal account of taking a public stand against sexual violence and leading the movement in Argentina. These revolutionary shifts changed the course of history – we look at how quickly they won mass support and were propelled by resistance against centuries of oppression faced by women everywhere.

How do these global movements start? What can we do to drive further change in rigid, discriminatory systems? And what exactly is men’s role in shaping our evolving world? We Change the Rules takes audiences through different facets of the problem.

5: The podcast is a legal equality starter pack encompassing knowledge, experience, and expertise.

Whether you are an organization or individual working on the intersection of women’s and girls’ rights, a policymaker, or an expert in the field, We Change the Rules is essential listening for anyone interested in achieving legal, political, and socio-cultural gender equality everywhere.

Start listening now

We Change the Rules tells the story of gender inequality in the law, its roots, the ecosystems nurturing it, and its transitions over the years. How should we end the story as the world moves forward in the age of permacrisis?

Available now on Apple, Spotify, and YouTube.