Interview with a hysteric


Tell us a little bit about yourself.

My name is Patricia and I come from Spain but I've been abroad for almost 13 years now. I've lived in Germany, Ireland and the UK and I feel I am a product of the EU. And I am ok with that. In my daily life I teach media at the University of Brighton, write papers on how people related to each other through media, photograph places that symbolise a sense of belonging, do yoga, run a bit, cook a lot, go for hikes sometimes, live as a single in Brighton and as a 50% custody step-mom in Northern Ireland. My daily life happens in between places.

What made you join HYSTERIA to become an active member?

I submitted my photography Chicken Skin series for inclusion in HYSTERIA and it was a very positive experience. Salome supported the development of the work and I am very grateful to her because she was attentive, respectful and positively challenging. During this process I started to read more about the collective and wanted to help with the project. Salome asked me if I was interested in becoming a member and I did. The FB page was fundamental to get grasp of the collective and how it works, which is quite organic. 

What is your role in HYSTERIA?

Right now I edit pieces for the website. Although I work with text, my strength is the visual essay. I am very interested in the interactions between text and images and how both are presented, communicated. For 2017, I aim to contribute more to the social media presence of the collective, especially Instagram.

What is your most hysterical moment?

My most hysterical moment, huh!? Oh well, apart from the most side of things, which I always find so hard as definitives are too absolute for me, I'd say my most hysterical moment repeats itself every now and then. It is usually framed by a social situation both awkward and comfortable enough (like when one a good friend brings the new partner over for dinner/drinks). Then at some point the table will discuss politics, always, there will be some testing of beliefs/ideas and maybe after some slow comments someone will crack a "harmless" and "loaded" joke and I will just won't have it. This is how I intersect my radicalism in my everyday life, by not tolerating these jokes. It makes me feel like the death of the party sometimes, but that is ok.

What does hysterical feminism meanr to you?

It means a community of like-minded like-acting human beings who are supportive, understanding and pro-active in constructing a long-term project. It means being involved in providing support for our voices (manifesto agreement and all that), in collaborating, in growing, in working together and in doing so with little outcome orientated goals. For me HYSTERIA is a place of development in my/our own terms. It's air.

How can HYSTERIA make a difference?

The ethos of collaboration, support and location-less that drive the collective have the potential to carve a platform for voices everywhere. I think it is very important that we continue publishing work in any language. Also, I think HYSTERIA can make a difference in helping its members make a difference. Many of us are involved in other projects in our communities which could be disseminated through HYSTERIA and/or benefit from support from other members. Yasmine Akim and I have been working together on a little piece about migration and identity as a result of HYSTERIA. Last term, my students found Bjork's and Yasmine's guest lecture inspiring and encouraging. 

What can HYSTERIA bring to feminism?

A sense of common ground. Hopefully the experience of collective growth, which is nothing new but so necessary!