Upcoming Event

Cambridge Forum: Rwandan Women Rising

featuring SWANEE HUNT presenting

Rwandan Women Rising

Date

Jun
13
Tuesday
June 13, 2017
7:00 PM

Location

First Parish Church
1446 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Tickets

This event is free; no tickets are required.

Cambridge Forum welcomes SWANEE HUNT for a discussion of her book Rwandan Women Rising, which follows the story of the women who worked for peace after the genocide in 1994.

Swanee Hunt chairs the Washington-based Institute for Inclusive Security. She is the Eleanor Roosevelt Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, and CEO of Hunt Alternatives.

About Rwandan Women Rising

In the spring of 1994, the tiny African nation of Rwanda was ripped apart by a genocide that left nearly a million dead. Neighbors attacked neighbors. Family members turned against their own. After the violence subsided, Rwanda's women—drawn by the necessity of protecting their families—carved out unlikely new roles for themselves as visionary pioneers creating stability and reconciliation in genocide's wake. Today, 64 percent of the seats in Rwanda's elected house of Parliament are held by women, a number unrivaled by any other nation. 

While news of the Rwandan genocide reached all corners of the globe, the nation's recovery and the key role of women are less well known. In Rwandan Women Rising, Swanee Hunt shares the stories of some seventy women—heralded activists and unsung heroes alike—who overcame unfathomable brutality, unrecoverable loss, and unending challenges to rebuild Rwandan society. Hunt, who has worked with women leaders in sixty countries for over two decades, points out that Rwandan women did not seek the limelight or set out to build a movement; rather, they organized around common problems such as health care, housing, and poverty to serve the greater good. Their victories were usually in groups and wide ranging, addressing issues such as rape, equality in marriage, female entrepreneurship, reproductive rights, education for girls, and mental health. 

These women's accomplishments provide important lessons for policy makers and activists who are working toward equality not only in Africa and other postconflict societies, but around the globe. Their stories, told in their own words via interviews woven throughout the book, demonstrate that the best way to reduce suffering and to prevent and end conflicts is to elevate the status of women throughout the world.

Praise

"Ambassador Swanee Hunt is a remarkable, passionate, and courageous public servant for our country and the world. Her commitment to women's rights, human rights, and human dignity is unsurpassed. In this timely new book, Rwandan Women Rising, Hunt uncovers lessons about how courageous women helped to rebuild a nation shattered by genocide. These are human stories worthy of our attention and admiration." —Ambassador Nicholas Burns, Harvard professor, former U.S. Under Secretary of State

"This is an excellent book! It is an honest, authentic, and thoughtful representation of how Rwandan women experienced the narratives of their lives and country. Swanee Hunt's unique voice and experience show how the story of one nation becomes meaningful and applicable to the rest of the world. This is a page-turner and an essential read for anybody interested in social change and women’s rights beyond Rwanda." —Zainab Salbi, author and Founder of Women for Women International

First Parish Church
1446 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes

As you exit the station, cross Mass. Ave. and look for the newsstand called Crimson Corner. Turn right and proceed north along Mass. Ave. going toward the Cambridge Common. You will pass the Harvard Coop, Bank of America, and CVS. The First Parish Church is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Church St. Please enter through the front door of the church.

Event Series: Cambridge Forum

For the past fifty years, Cambridge Forum has provided free public forums for the discussion of the issues and ideas that are shaping our world. From culture to technology, the environment to public policy, Cambridge Forum offers citizens vital information about the challenges facing contemporary society.

Forum programs, which are edited and produced for subsequent broadcast on public radio stations nation-wide, feature the nation's most noted thinkers, creators, social entrepreneurs, and leaders from the worlds of academia, business, government, media and the arts. Programs are held in Harvard Square with book sales provided by Harvard Book Store.

Learn more at cambridgeforum.org.

General Info
(617) 661-1515
info@harvard.com

Media Inquiries
(617) 661-1424 x6
mediainquiries@harvard.com

Accessibility Inquiries
access@harvard.com

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