Women’s activism in Kosovo manifested through protests

Author(s): Erza Kurti
Final project
Year of publication:
Supervisors: Linda Gusia
feminist, movement, Kosovo, protests, women, activism “We March, We Don’t Celebrate”, solidarity, radical


This paper brings a historical summary of the manifestation of feminist protests in the period from 1990 till 2022. Analyzed here will be the protests that took place during the 90s organized by women and the feminist protests of recent years. Three generations of feminists can be identified in this paper. The first one is amidst a war; the second generation of feminists was the first to refer to themselves as such while discussing feminist theories; and the third is the ongoing generation, who are perceived as more radical.

Women’s protests in Kosovo were organized depending on the context. While the war was happening in Kosovo under the aggression of Serbia from 1998-to 1999, the 90s women’s movement was more focused on the liberation and freedom of the country and on seeking international attention to intervene in Kosovo for its freedom. The next two generations were concentrated specifically on women’s rights using intersectionality lenses where they raised attention and protested for different issues, mainly violence in its various forms such as economic, emotional, domestic, rape, sexual assaults, etc. The intersectional lens made them raise issues of homophobia, LGBTQI rights, and injustices happening in other countries.

The paper shows how, after the war ended, protests were organized mostly by women’s rights NGOs, and how the feminist movement changed with the collective “MARShojmë S’festojmë” [We March, We don’t Celebrate]. The collective has brought the three generations into the same movement, making it easier to analyze the differences and the similarities. The paper also analyses the high cost of activism in a patriarchal society and the solidarity between activists in Kosovo, as one of the important discussions in the feminist movement. Besides the cost on different levels, especially the burnout, emotional damage, and depression, is the solidarity of women’s activists or sisterhood that keep activists active in the movement. Finally, the research, analyzes how the feminist movement is improving year by year and how the protests are becoming more radical with each new generation of the feminist movement.