Maternal Gift Economy: Breaking Through -
Ongoing Salons

Every two weeks

Salon #42 - International Women's Day Celebration

March 11, 2023 - 11am - 1pm US CT / Noon ET

Featuring Mary Ann Beall, Angela Dolmetsch, Kaarina Kailo, Paola Melchiori, Angela Miles, Maria Suarez, Genevieve Vaughan, and Freida Werden.

Kaarina Kailo, Ph.D. and adj. professor of Oulu University, Finland, is a writer, scholar, ecoactivist, politician, ex-professor of women’s studies and a self-made artist who illustrates her books on mythology. She has published hundreds of articles and numerous anthologies or books regarding ecofeminism, the gender impact of neoliberalism, saunas and sweatlodges, Northern women’s culture and mythology, the gift imaginary and the bear religion. She has held women’s studies positions in Canada and Finland, and as senior fellow of the Finnish academy. Most recently, she has become fellow of the Archeomythological Institute’s European branch. She focues on peaceful, egalitarian cultures exploring the myth of Terra Feminarum as the pre-patriarchal world of the North. Currently she also engages in peace studies and was invited as co-chair and plenary speaker to the Bandung-Belgrad-Havana commemorative peace conference in Indonesia.

Genevieve Vaughan is an independent researcher who lives part time in Italy and part in Texas. She created the multicultural all-woman activist Foundation for a Compassionate Society (1987-2005) and the Temple of Sekhmet in the Nevada desert (1992 – ongoing) and she co-created the network: International Feminists for a Gift Economy (2001 – ongoing). Her books are For-Giving, a Feminist Criticism of Exchange (1997), Homo Donans (2006) and The Gift in the Heart of Language: the Maternal Source of Meaning (2015). She has edited Il Dono/The Gift (2004), Women and the Gift Economy (2007) and The Maternal Roots of the Gift Economy (2019). A volume of the Canadian Women’s Studies Journal dedicated to the maternal gift economy has just appeared (2020).

More information @

Paola Melchiori is a Feminist theorist, activist and writer, author of books/videos/articles on feminist issues. She has created nationally and internationally, free spaces of critical thinking, based on the model of the Free Universities. Their main idea is to develop and make visible new paradigms of knowledge based on women’s ways of thinking and knowing, working in an interdisciplinary way across cultures, classes and specializations. She is the founder and past president of The Women’s Free University in Milan, of Crinali, a research and intercultural education association in Milan, of the International Feminist University Network, an international think-tank for women’s critical thinking and education. From the mid eighties she has worked in different African and Latin American countries in women’s education, participatory research and popular education with a Freirian and feminist perspective. During the years of the UN Conferences of the 90ties she has formed a solid International network of feminists working together on these issues. Her main interest is the intercultural collaboration among feminists of different cultures and disciplines. She is the author of several essays on feminist theory, of four books, and of several videos.

Frieda Werden is co-founder and series producer of WINGS: Women’s International News Gathering Service, which provides women’s voices and issues coverage to noncommercial radio. The project started with the contact list from a radio women’s meeting called by Genevieve Vaughan at the 3rd World Conference on Women in Nairobi in 1985. The pilot was funded and distributed by US National Public Radio, but WINGS found a more receptive audience through the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC). Werden’s paper on community radio appears in the anthology Women and the Gift Economy.

More @

María Suárez Toro is a feminist journalist, an activist in defense of human rights, and an educator. She was born in Puerto Rico and has been a resident of San José, Costa Rica for close to 50 years.[1] She was a co-director of the Feminist International Radio Endeavor (FIRE) from 1991 to 2011, of which she is a co-founder. She worked as an educator in literacy in many countries in Central America during the 1970s and 1980s. Since 1998 she has been an Associate Professor of Communication at the University of Denver. Since 2011 she has been a correspondent for Haiti, Puerto Rico, and Costa Rica for the News Service for the Women of Latin America and the Caribbean (Servicio de Noticias de la Mujer de Latinoamérica y el Caribe), and since 2015 has been a coordinator of the Community Center Diving Ambassadors of the South Caribbean Sea (Centro comunitario de buceo Embajadores y Embajadoras del Mar del Caribe Sur), which is dedicated to archeological diving and recovery of the history of the afro-descendant population on the coast of Costa Rica.

Angela Miles is a founding member of Toronto Women for a Just and Healthy Planet, Antigonish Women's Association, Feminist Network for a Gift Economy and a member of the editorial board of Canadian Woman Studies. She is Professor Emerita at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto where she co-founded the International Women’s Human Rights Education Summer Institute. Her publications include, Integrative Feminisms: Building Global Visions and the edited collection Women in a Globalizing World: Transforming Equality, Development, Diversity and Peace.


Mary Ann Beall coming soon.

Previous Salons