Open letter against the targeting of our colleagues
We express our unconditional solidarity with our colleagues who have been targeted by the far right for their research and teaching.

An instructor at the University of Athens is being targeted because she appears to be standing next to some people who have been videotaped tearing up an image of the Virgin Mary in an argument with a passer-by. A professor at Panteion University is being attacked for her talk at a 2014 conference titled "Love creates families."

It is no coincidence that government officials and their supporters are choosing to attack feminist academics at this time. The government fears the emergence of an empowered queer feminist movement given the shattering of heteropatriarchal normativity by the #metoo movement in Greece. Whilst the Prime Minister comments on the dangerous effects of social media on democracy, members of his party, including an elected Member of Parliament, use the same means to attack our colleagues.

The government promotes and bolsters the doctrine of "fatherland, religion, family". It forcibly imposes it every day on the streets, squares, concentration camps, universities, prisons, social media, in the propagandistic "news" on TV channels. These attacks on our colleagues are an aspect of the growing repression of a police state. The policing of speech, its surveillance and punishment aims to shrink the public space but also our own consciousness, in an attempt not only to silence but to make unthinkable certain positions, ideas, and imaginaries.

We strongly oppose the state's attempt to monitor and control ideas that seem dangerous to it or that challenge power. The police have no place inside universities. Nor have they any place in the consciousnesses of a free people.

We express, from the bottom of our hearts, our deep gratitude for the scientific work and social contributions of our colleagues; we are grateful for their existence. It is a breath of fresh air in the suffocating condition in which we live, and a source of inspiration, resistance, care, and courage as we experience the daily, atmospheric violence of state institutions and socially empowered perpetrators. We actively and proudly participate in the dissemination of queer, trans and feminist theory and research, methodology, and praxis within and beyond universities.

Indeed, we believe that queer, trans, and feminist ideas are dangerous: they are capable of creating cracks in the oppressive heteronormativity that surrounds us. Today we learnt how dangerous they are. Raising our voices, all we have to lose is our chains.

In closing, we reiterate the slogan of the local movement for our liberation and the abolition of gendered sexualised power intertwined with our bordered reality:

Gays, trans, lesbians, priestesses of disgrace
We are proudly the shame of the nation.

Feminist Autonomous Centre for Research
Athens, 14 March 2021

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