Roya Hoodeh

Are we all woken up by world news notifications most mornings, or is it just me? It’s my view that that’s my best bet to keep up with this ever changing world is just that.

Protest Culture

I was walking out of the university’s registrar office one fine morning, making my way through the streets in Gent. Although my mind was with my home country of Iran, which is going through distress these days, I was brought back by the tantalizing smell of waffles that often take over when the pastry is being freshly prepared. Suddenly I noticed “Woman Life Freedom” painted beautifully on the wall behind the UFO building. It made me realize the connection between art, politics and activism that is ever so present in Gent.


“Woman Life Freedom” has become a staple slogan of the protests over the past 135 days, expressing the Iranian people’s dissatisfaction with the current economic, social and political climate. Many of the great movements of our world's history used protest and benefited humanity as a whole. 


I was so far from home, yet seeing the expression of my home country’s current mood on the streets around my campus gave me a good feeling. The exposure of the international community in a city such as Gent warms my heart as an international student living here for a year, making it home for a year. 


Shortly thereafter I stumbled upon organized protests at the Stadshal, posters around the city supporting the first modern women led movement, proactively and openly expressing the world views in an artistic fashion. It is fascinating to me, and instead of feeling lethargic at a time like this I feel at home. 


Same as my fellow master students, I am absolutely trying my best to work on my thesis and provide as many drafts as possible to my supervisor.  Regularly walking past the cultural and historic architecture of charming Ghent can really help with inspiring creativity.  Best of luck to us all, we're halfway there!


Find me at Le Bal Infernal where I usually work on my thesis and/or to discuss modern women, life and freedom.