When A Woman Took The Fall For A Man Accused Of Sexual Assault, Women Went To Their Closets

"Feminist battles happen every day."

A week ago, Sara Danius was busy making history as the first woman to head the organization that awards the Nobel Prize in Literature. Now, her impact is making history in another way. 

Danius, who was the permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, stepped down from her position last week, five months after 18 women accused Jean-Claude Renault, a former French-Swedish photographer, of sexual assault. Renault runs The Forum, a private cultural club, with his wife, poet Katarina Frostenson, which happens to have a history of donating to the Swedish Academy.


Since then, Danius severed ties with Renault and the organization, and launched an investigation into The Forum. But that, coupled with the fact that Renault denies the allegations he has been accused of leaking the Nobel Prize winners several times since 1996, only pushed for Danius' resignation from the Academy. Frostenson, who was involved in the Academy, also left the organization.

Danius is known for wearing pussy bow blouses. So in the wake of her exit last week, women from Sweden took to social media to stand in solidarity with her by wearing pussy bow blouses, or using a scarf to simulate one.

The cause also prompted Alice Bah Kuhnke, Sweden's minister of Culture and Democracy, to post an image of herself on Instagram wearing a pussy bow blouse. 

"Feminist battles happen every day," she said in her post

But the fight against Sweden's own  #MeToo movement hasn't slowed down in a week. This past Thursday, thousands of protesters gathered in front of Stockholm's Stortorget Square to call for the resignation of its remaining board members. Similar protests were in held in several Swedish cities across the country.

Danius' future and the future of the Swedish Academy in the wake of this scandal are unclear right now, but this might be the just the beginning of larger #MeToo and Time's Up revolution for Sweden.

Cover image: Zenza Flarini / Shutterstock.com


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