In several French cities such as Paris and Toulouse, Saturday October 16, 2021, the #NousToutes collective organized “die-ins”, as reported by the newspaper Le Parisien. But what is it exactly?
On listing the names of the victims murdered by their spouse or former companion since the beginning of the year, 93 women dressed in black lay down in the square of City Hall in Paris. The name and age of each missing were written on a sign. A strong action, which did not fail to mark the spirits of passers-by and to impact Internet users who viewed the videos and photos of this “die-in”. This form of demonstration consists of the participants lying down on the public road, in protest. Commonly practiced by activist groups, it is particularly often visible in gatherings of environmental and animal defenders, such as Extinction Rebellion, war opponents, but also in the fight against AIDS.
Since its creation in 1989, the association Act Up has multiplied the poignant “die-ins” to represent people who have died of this disease, such as the collective #NousToutes today commemorates the victims of feminicides. The principle is to simulate death, to create a visual shock, while attracting the gaze of onlookers and the attention of the media. Protesters can cover themselves with banners, placards, fake blood. Here the body becomes a tool of activism.
“65% of these murdered women had contacted the police”
With these demonstrations in the four corners of France, #NousToutes deplored “state and legal system failures“about the handling of domestic violence and feminicide cases.”65% of these murdered women had made contact with the police or the justice system, but the public authorities turned their backs on them (…) It is time to stop experimenting in order to put in place comprehensive public policies throughout the region. territory“, argued a member of the collective to the megaphone.