Feminist Swearing Night host Rosa Meriläinen: “My favourite swear word is the sacred and powerful vittu”
16.05.2018 | Equality & diversity

Feminist Swearing Night arrives to Dublin on Wednesday. The concept of the event is created by Feministinen ajatushautomo Hattu. The night will be hosted by one of its founders, Rosa Meriläinen. She tells us what the event is all about.

Why we should attend Feminist Swearing Night and why now?

“In the time of social media the misogyny has emerged in a new way. As a women, one might feel being alone, and the world might feel like a battlefield. That’s why we need the counter-speech, and spaces where women dare to be angry, stinging and rude. Sharing experiences gives us huge strength and energy for laughing at all that crap one gets to see in the society or gets to face in their own lives.”

Why do you have to swear? Wouldn’t it be better to speak nicely?

“When you have a permission to be rude and don’t have to consider every word, it is easier to talk straight and say things like they are. Besides, swearing is fun. It’s somehow empowering and hilarious. The gender stereotype, that swearing sounds uglier done by women, still exists. Therefore it can be very liberating to swear with a permission. Swearing might be especially helpful for those who are less experienced at speaking on a microphone.”

In the past you have hosted feminist swearing nights in Finland and Brussels. What do you think it will be like in Ireland?

“I’ve heard that Irish women are foul-mouthed and keen to swear. At the moment there is also a big feminist debate on abortion referendum. I’m really looking forward to the swearing night.”

Are men allowed to participate?

“Men are very welcome. There have been male swearers every time. This event is open to all feminists, and being a feminist is not a question of gender. Anyone can support gender equality.”

What is your favourite swear word?

“It is vittu that I use the most. In the Finnish folklore vittu means genitalia of a respected woman who has given birth. The word has also been used as a magic word. It refers to one of the most beautiful things in the world: the sacred and powerful vagina.”  

Feminist Swearing Night 16.5., Chaplins, Dublin. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/feminist-swearing-night-tickets-44546950127

Interview: Hannele Rodriguez


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