Extraterritorial Activism: From Abortion as National Privilege to Universal Right
Women on Waves (WoW)
Chaired by: Véronique Dudouet (Berghof Foundation)
Respondent: Dilar Dirik (Kurdish Women's Movement)
Rebecca Gomperts is the founder and director of Women on Waves and Women on Web. She studied medicine and visual arts in Amsterdam and the Netherlands. She earned her Masters Public Policy from Princeton University in The USA and her PHD from Karolinska Institutute in Sweden.
This lecture addresses the possibility of reforming states through extraterri- torial activism. While Women on Waves sails under the Dutch flag in order to be able to perform abortions that are legal under Dutch law, it does not necessarily promote the Dutch state as such. Rather, it defends a specific emancipatory heritage of the Dutch women’s rights movement, in order to defend and shape its principle into a universal right instead of a national privilege. Starting from national pro-choice law, Women on Waves thus shapes an internationalist discourse of universalism by compounding the legal state with extraterritorial activism.
The New World Summit: Stateless State took place at the Royal Flemish Theater in Brussels, Belgium, 19-21 September 2014.