International Women's Day 2019

Happy International Women’s Day 2019!

Here at Zilchin, we are constantly discussing the importance of being intentional.

Intention: A determination to act a certain way

So today on international women’s day, we are bringing you this: participating in Zero Waste is a revolutionary radical feminist act.


(PS - stay tuned for posts like this on other days of importance surrounding the galaxy of gender such as International Non-Binary People’s Day, International Transgender Day of Visibility, Pansexual Pride day, and many more LGBTQIA+ awareness periods)


We are all aware of the wage gap in the US - how women make 20% less money for their work - (and the rate can reach 40% for women of color.) Additionally, the term feminization of poverty is used by UN to recognize the global gendered dimension to poverty.

The majority of the 1.5 billion people living on 1 dollar a day or less are women. In addition, the gap between women and men caught in the cycle of poverty has continued to widen in the past decade.
— United Nations

Climate change actually magnifies these gender inequalities by exacerbating “underlying social, economic, cultural, and political factors” that prevent the ability to respond to the increased extremes of climate change such as natural disasters, droughts, and rising sea levels.

So how does all of this lead to the understanding of environmental actions such as the zero waste and sustainability movements as radical revolutionary acts? Because our society feminizes nature and naturalizes women. This interchangeable gendering reinforces subordination because it makes the patriarchy comfortable in its control/domination of both.

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By participating in movements that value our earth and are based in ecofeminism, we are intentionally embracing alternative ideas of existence than those based on valuing commodities over humans and our environment. We embrace economies of care - purchasing fair trade and sustainably made products, supporting a culture of mending and fixing, participating in a sharing economy. Economies of care value women in news ways and resist marginalization by embracing equity and accessibility and stepping away from traditional gender roles, ideas of productivity, and classist perpetuations of capitalism.

By no means are these movements perfect

Most, if not all, are predominantly white, able-bodied, middle-class, cis-het female spaces (blog post to come). The fair trade market has its own problems  of accessibility and equity (blog post to come). Second hand shopping is complicated and food deserts make supporting local businesses and sustainable eating extremely difficult (blog posts to come — we promise!) We each have so much beautiful work to do, and right now we can mindfully celebrate this day of wonder by knowing our revolution more deeply.

We encourage everyone to check out our resources page to follow, encourage, and promote activists of marginalized identities - particularly these two incredibly important articles discussing environmental racism and inclusivity in the Zero Waste Movement.

Clara von Dohlen