Selma James 80 on 15 August this year
Selma James has been campaigning against sexism, racism and capitalism for more than six decades. She is a strategist and critical thinker who has published widely. She is the founder in 1972 of the International Wages for Housework Campaign and co-ordinator of the Global Women's Strike whose strategy for change is “Invest in Caring Not Killing.”
Ms. James wrote the classic A Woman’s Place in 1952 as part of the Johnson-Forest Tendency which was founded and led by CLR James, her partner and colleague for almost 30 years. She opened the “domestic labour debate” in the 1970s with The Power of Women and the Subversion of the Community which spelled out that women’s unwaged housework and other caring work outside of the market produces the whole working class. Thus the market economy is built on women’s work and their double and triple day.
In 1975 she became the first spokeswoman for the English Collective of Prostitutes. Ms James has been described as a “truly creative thinker” and her work as “path-breaking”. She is in demand as a dynamic and exciting speaker who impresses audiences with the depth of her understanding, the breadth of her interests, and her determination to win. In 2008 she became a founder member of the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network. Most recently, she has introduced and edited a book by Mumia Abu Jamal on Jailhouse Lawyers. She is based at the Crossroads Women’s Centre in Kentish Town , London , of which she is a founder. She is a mother and grandmother.
Co-ordinator of Global Women's Strike
Quoted in NY Times Op-Ed: Pay People to Cook at Home!
Speaking at The Life and Legacy of C.L.R. James Conference
In the Guardian: From welfare to wages, women fight back against the uncaring market
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Letter to The Guardian reporting on launch of petition 'Invest in a caring society. A living wage for mothers and other carers.'UK Thu 16th May 13