Sistren in Parliament: Addressing Abortion and Women's Rights Through Popular Theatre
MaComere, Journal of the Association of Caribbean Women Writers and Scholars, Vol. 11, pp. 45-60, December 2009
17 Pages Posted: 27 Jan 2011 Last revised: 24 Feb 2012
Date Written: December 1, 2009
This brief paper gives an account of advocacy activities of a select group of women's organisations in Jamaica (and the wider Caribbean) to influence parliamentary debate surrounding reform of legal provisions of the conditions under which an abortion may be procured. The paper address the key issues of public health risks to women, religious opposition, and ethics surrounding the debate which took place over a two year period (2007-2009). The paper does this by focusing on the performance of Sistren Theatre Collective, who made a historic appearance to members of Jamaican parliament using dance, song and drama to bring across the points of social injustice, stigma and unsafe abortion in the lives of many Jamaican women.
Keywords: popular theatre, women's reproductive health & rights, legislative reform
JEL Classification: I18, J71
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation