PODCAST: Counting dead women & the Femicide Census

Karen Ingala Smith began counting Britain’s murdered women, putting their names on her own blog back in 2012. There were 126 women killed through male violence that year, 143 in 2013 and 150 in 2014. Last month, she launched the Femicide Census, which profiles women killed by men. Sarah Ditum writes, “The Femicide Census means that data from dozens of sources about the killings of women by men can finally be brought together.”

Karen Ingala Smith
Karen Ingala Smith

Ingala Smith wants individuals, institutions, and the media to start understanding that this kind of violence is not random but, rather, systemic and gendered.

She is the Chief Executive of nia, a London-based charity providing services for women and children who have experienced sexual and domestic violence. Ingala Smith blogs at kareningalasmith.com and tweets from @K_IngalaSmith and @CountDeadWomen.

Meghan Murphy
Meghan Murphy

Founder & Editor

Meghan Murphy is a freelance writer and journalist. She has been podcasting and writing about feminism since 2010 and has published work in numerous national and international publications, including New Statesman, Vice, Al Jazeera, The Globe and Mail, I-D, Truthdig, and more. Meghan completed a Masters degree in the department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University in 2012 and lives in Vancouver, B.C. with her dog.

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  • Thank-you Karen and Meghan for this fantastic podcast.

    Karen’s work inspired me to start a similar Counting Dead Women list this year for Canada: http://bit.ly/CountingDeadWomenCDN

    So far there have been (an unconfirmed total of) 15 women killed in Canada this year. Four of these women were known to be Aboriginal. At least 5 of these women have been killed by former or current partners or a son/grandson. Reading through these media reports has shown me how scant the information provided is and how skewed the reporting can be. One of these women has yet to be named by the media despite her murder occurring in late January, for instance.

    We need to examine the issue of femicide closer in Canada too.

    • Meghan Murphy

      Thanks so much for doing/sharing this, Orla.

      • Thank Karen – she is truly inspirational and I hope more countries follow suit.

        FYI I updated the list this morning when this article showed up in my alert: http://www.edmontonjournal.com/Simons+Keeping+homicide+victims+secret+doesn+serve+justice/10913359/story.html.

        There are now two unnamed women on the list that are likely the victims of murder by their husbands and the RCMP is saying that it is a policy not to disclose names or perpetrators in instances of domestic murder/suicide. This, in effect, erases these victims. More attention needs to be drawn to this policy and why it is in place.

  • Lori

    Off topic but was just wondering if you have heard about or seen Tricked on Netflix? Watching now, absolutely heartbreaking but it is a definite departure from the empowered, happy-hooker narrative I see everywhere else.

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