A multi-media campaign from Black Feminist Future responds to attacks on reproductive rights in the US
Using short films, posters and Gifs, Abortion is Freedom looks to centre the experiences of Black and gender-expansive women, and counter narratives that have been “weaponised” against them.
- Olivia Hingley
- 22 November 2022
Abortion is Freedom is a multi-media campaign from Black Feminist Future (BFF), an Atlanta-based advocacy organisation, dedicated to “galvanising the social and political power of Black women, girls and gender-expansive people towards liberation”. Developed by a 100 per cent BIPOC creative design team, this particular campaign comes after continued attacks on reproductive rights, specifically focusing on happenings in the state of Georgia. Using film, posters and Gifs, the campaign aims to “change the way folks think about abortion – rather than how they feel about abortions”, explains Paris Hatcher, BFF’s executive director. She continues: “A part of that thought-shifting is expressing unapologetically that abortion is essential to Black liberation.”
The campaign features a 30-second audio ad which shows a group of four talking, chatting and doing one another’s hair, over the top a 15-second chant saying, “my body, my business, my freedom”. The film highlights a core part of the campaign’s focus on community and Black love. “Black feminism provides a justice-focused roadmap to solutions and conditions where abortion, and all reproductive decisions, are inherently ours, collectively supported and adequately resourced,” BFF’s website explains. “Even if you might not need an abortion – your folks might – and don’t you want them to be able to do it with dignity? Black liberation means taking care of our own because no one else will. Abortion is community care.”
Another key element of the campaign is its use of Gifs. Slogans like ‘But It’s Not Your Uterus Though’ and ‘Worry ‘Bout Yourself. My Body My Choice’ are imposed over recognisable short clips from the internet. On why the campaign decided to use the short clips, Paris explains that it was in part to make the campaign approachable and accessible. “Gifs are part of our social experience online. They especially provide an opportunity for Black folks to narrate our thoughts and experiences in a way that is honest to who we are.” But, moreover, it was also another means of reclamation. “What has often been deemed as internet or Gen Z culture is — in reality — Black culture,” Paris continues. “By using meme aesthetics and reactions, we are reclaiming what is ours, affirming that we must control our own bodies, and amplifying our values in the abortion discourse.”
Reflecting on the campaign and how it has been received, Paris explains that, despite some small backlash from "anti's", it has on the whole been thoroughly positive. “Black women and gender-expansive people felt prioritised and centred in a way they haven’t before with this campaign. Our core audience has been sharing the Gifs, engaging the landing page and expressing appreciation for the content we have been promoting.”
GalleryCopyright © Black Feminist Future, 2022
Copyright © Black Feminist Future, 2022
About the Author
Olivia (she/her) joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in November 2021 and soon became staff writer. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English literature and history, she’s particularly interested in photography, publications and type design.