WE ARE

BERLIN
STRIPPERS
COLLECTIVE

'BERLIN STRIPPERS COLLECTIVE' CURRENTLY CONSISTS OF SHOWGIRLS
EXTRAORDINAIRE FROM ALL OVER THE METROPOLIS.
HOWEVER, OUR RANKS ARE EVER-EXPANDING.

MANIFESTO

WE ARE FEMINIST PERFORMERS. WE ARE WORKERS. WE ARE A COLLECTIVE OF STRIPPERS.
THROUGH DANCING WE CHANNEL OUR CREATIVITY, THROUGH UNDRESSING WE EXPRESS OUR FREEDOM.
WE WILL NOT TOLERATE THE RESTRICTIVE EXPECTATIONS THAT SOCIETY HAS LACED US INTO LIKE A HEAVY GOWN. THEY EXPECT US TO WEAR THE CORSETRY OF THE ETERNAL DOUBLE STANDARD: BE SUBSERVIENT, BE SEXY, BUT REMAIN RESPECTABLE. WE ARE DONE STRUGGLING TO BREATHE. WE REJECT SYSTEMIC SEXISM AND SONG AFTER SONG WE TAKE OFF THOSE CORSETS AND PEEL OFF THOSE EXPECTATIONS, DANCING TO THE RHYTHM OF FREEDOM. WE CLIMB HIGHER AND HIGHER UP THE POLE, REACHING FOR LIBERATION.
UNDER CAPITALISTIC LABOUR RELATIONS, ALL BODIES ARE OBJECTS ACCOMPLISHING TASKS: YOUR BODIES JUST AS MUCH AS OURS. OUR TASK – WHAT WE SELL, IS ENTERTAINMENT. WHAT WE DO IS PERFORMING. WE MAKE THE RULES AND WE ENFORCE THE BOUNDARIES – IT IS OUR CHOICE. WE FOUND OUR WAY OF SURVIVING WITHIN THIS CAPITALISTIC JUNGLE. AND STILL, EVERY DAY IS A STRUGGLE, EVERY DAY WE HAVE TO JUSTIFY WHAT WE DO, IN ADDITION TO JUST DOING IT. THE PROBLEM LIES IN OUR SOCIETY AND NOT IN OUR JOB.
SOCIETY DOESN’T LIKE US. THEY CAST US AS VICTIMS, THEY TELL US WHAT TO DO WITH OUR BODIES. THEY RANT ABOUT OBJECTIFICATION, HAVING PLENTY TO SAY ABOUT OUR WORK, EVEN IF THEY HAVE NEVER SPOKEN TO ANY OF US. THEY LACK NUANCE. IF THEY ASKED US, THEY WOULD REALIZE HOW WE HAVE TURNED OUR SEXUALITIES INTO SELF-PRESERVATION AND INTO A BOND OF LOVE, FOR OURSELVES AND OUR COLLEAGUES. INTO A CAREER. OUR BODIES AND OUR HIGH HEELS ARE OUR TOOLS – LIKE THE HAMMER, THE PEN, THE MIND, WHICH WE USE TO FOSTER LOVE, TO CRAFT A FANTASY, BUT ALSO TO CREATE AND SUSTAIN OUR COMMUNITY.
WOMEN*’S BODIES ARE CONSTANTLY SEXUALISED WITHOUT THEIR CONSENT, BUT IF WE CAPITALISE ON THIS, IF WE TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE SYSTEM, SOCIETY JUDGES US. WOMEN* AND THOSE WORKING AS WOMEN ARE REGULARLY HARASSED AND AGGRESSED IN THE STREET, RECEIVING ATTENTION THEY NEVER ASKED FOR. THIS IS HOW WE RISE ABOVE. ON THE STAGE, WE RECEIVE ATTENTION BECAUSE WE CHOOSE IT, BECAUSE WE GET PAID FOR IT.
WE FEEL CHANGE ON THE WIND. WE FEEL THAT THE WORLD IS ALMOST READY TO LISTEN TO OUR VOICES, READY TO WELCOME A GROUP OF TOUGH, EMPOWERED BEINGS. THIS IS WHERE WE COME IN: WE GATHERED IN THE RED LIGHT, AND NOW WE STEP INTO THE DAYLIGHT.
WE HAVE DECIDED TO TAKE CONTROL OVER OUR BODIES. WE CAST OFF STEREOTYPES AND STRUCTURES THAT TELL WOMEN THAT THEY CAN BE EITHER SEXUAL OR SMART, BUT NEVER BOTH. WE ARE NO VICTIMS. WE ARE PERFORMERS, WE ARE WORKERS, WE ARE STUDENTS, WE ARE OVER THE TOP, WE ARE ELEGANT, WE ARE LOUD, WE ARE QUIET, WE ARE FRIENDS, WE ARE DAUGHTERS, SONS, MOTHERS, LOVERS, EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN. WE ARE HUMAN, AND WE ARE DIVINE.
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