Craftivism is a form of activism based on practices of craft, such as knitting, sewing, and other "domestic arts." The term was coined in 2003 by knitter and activist Betsy Greer. Craftivism typically integrates aspects of feminist, environmentalist, and anti-capitalist movements, utilizing the social and expressive nature of crafting to communicate solidarity, empowerment, and even action. This guide is aimed towards individuals who are familiar with these crafts and are interested in using their practices to engage with activism and social justice.
Craft practices have historically been undermined and undervalued, considered "women's work" rather than high or fine art. In the fight to reclaim these traditions and give them their rightful due, certain perspectives have dominated the writing of this history. The craftivism movement has been criticized for its perceived lack of intersectionality and its passive approach towards protest, often rightfully so. This LibGuide seeks to re-center marginalized voices within the craft community, as well as articulate the reasons why women have historically turned to craft as a preferred form of direct action.
Each page of this LibGuide shares highlights from the history of craft as action and empowerment, focusing on Knitting, Quilting, and Embroidery. Also featured are examples of contemporary movements, expanding these practices to address the anxieties and inequities of the modern day. Each page links to resources for books, videos, and groups for practitioners who want to join the Craftivism movement on the local and global level.