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Feminist killjoy workshop Sappho's festival

The figure of the «feminist killjoy» is one of the most powerful and empowering creations of the feminist and queer lesbian thinker Sara Ahmed. Through this figure, not only Ahmed reconceptualizes our collective feminist stories as a genealogy of stubborn, wilful, and bold contestation and disruption of the patriarchal, heteronormative «joy», but offers us new and inspiring political tools with which to continue this endeavour today, both individually and collectively.

The workshop aims to present the figure of the feminist killjoy and to interrogate its importance for our lives, exploring ways in which we can assemble a «feminist killjoy survival kit» that can intertwine Ahmed’s suggestions with our own feminist killjoy experiences, needs and desires.

We will delve into some of Ahmed’s most stinging ideas, debating and adapting them to build a feminist killjoy toolkit to carry around with us, so as to forcefully carry on with our feminist and lesbian struggles wherever we go.

Michela Baldo is a Lecturer in Translation Studies at the University of Birmingham (UK). Her main research concerns the role of translation in Italian queer transfeminist activism. She also works as a translator. She has co-translated into English with Elena Basile the book Queer Theories (2020), by Italian scholar Lorenzo Bernini, and co-translated into Italian with feminoska an anthology of writings by Sara Ahmed entitled Un’altra cena rovinata (Fandango 2023) and The Feminist Killjoy Handbook with the title Il manuale della femminista guastafeste (Fandango 2024).

Laura Scarmoncin is an Italian translator from English and French, and a lesbian-queer feminist activist. After more than a decade in the international academia as a scholar of Women’s & Queer History and Gender & Sexuality Studies, she now lives with her two cats and one of her partners in the countryside near Milan (Italy), where she freely cultivates her queer Catholic spirituality. She has translated feminist and lesbian thinkers such as Gloria E. Anzaldúa and Sara Ahmed, and is currently working on the new Italian translation of Monique Wittig’s L’Opoponax.