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'Take Back the Night' to Begin Today

Event on Violence Against Women to Discuss Same-Sex Violence for First Time

By Shine MAY Hung

Editor's Note: Due to a production error, part of this story did not appear in yesterday's newspaper. It is reprinted here.

This year's "Take Back the Night" program will feature discussions for the first time on same-sex violence and ethnic factors contributing to violence, organizers said this week.

"Take Back and Night," an annual week devoted to awareness about violence against women, is scheduled to begin to today.

"Our goal is to empower women," said co-coordinator Anne O. Decker '95. "We, don't want to focus on women as victims but to allow them... to learn about the violence in order to act more positively," Decker said.

The week will feature a series of panels, speeches and workshops exploring a host of sex-crime concerns.

Rebecca Walker, daughter of author Alice M. Walker and founder of a Third Wave, a feminist group, will deliver this year's keynote address.

"Defending our Lives," an Oscarwinning short documentary on batered women in Massachusetts, will be presented in Boylston Auditorium on April 16.

And Linda Fairstein, head of the Manhattan district attorney's sex-crimes unit, will speak on the legal system's response to rape at the Institute of Politics on April 20.

"There is a special emphasis this year to reach out to everyone-people of all levels of consciousness-about these issues," said Hallie Z. Levine '95, a member of the "Take Back and Night" steering committee. Levine is also Crimson editor.

Desire to Be Educational

Decker said she wants to inform the Harvard community and surrounding areas on the topic of sexual assault.

"Our main desire is not to just preach to the converted," said Decker. "We want to be educational as well. [The program] is non-traditional in that sense."

"This year, we're also trying to involve the greater community, like MIT, the Boston chapter of National Organization for Women and Boston College," Decker added.

Other Events

Other highlights of the week will include a self-defense workshop run by the Sanchin Women's School of Karate and Self-Defense and a poetry reading at Dudley House featuring local women poets.

The week will culminate in a student march from the Quad to Radcliffe Yard ending with an open microphone rally.

In the past, participants in the rally have shared experiences and raised pertinent issues regarding sexual violence, according to Jenna B. McNeill '95, one of the coordinators.

"Take Back the Night 1994" is sponsored by the Radcliffe Union of Students. Some events will be cosponsored by the Institute of Politics, the Undergraduate Council and Safety Walk.

Schedules for the week will be delivered to students through University mail.

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