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30 / 07 / 2004
Carmen Alborch, former Minister of Culture, "Fear of solitude is worse than solutide itself"

The Forum's "141 Questions" (81): "Is it better to be alone or in bad company?" For the representative and writer, Carmen Alborch, "it is better to live alone than to be with someone who you feel `regular´ about." She defended "quality relationships" and demanded "an education of values that are neither exclusive nor excluding, where all of society advances in equality and in respect to diversity." Alborch who proved to be totally in agreement with the project of gender violence law, reminded us "hegemonic culture has overvalued the positive aspect of masculinity" and stressed that "all people are complete beings and we are all worth the same."

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Carmen Alborch (Castelló de Rugat, Valencia, 1947), representative and former minister of Culture and writer, stressed today at the Haima stage that friendship between women have gotten a bad reputation so as to make meetings among women more difficult, "People have insisted in affirming that a woman's worst enemy is another woman, in order to take away our strength and self-esteem. I can understand my life without a boyfriend, but I can't understand it without my friends," she explained.

Before the large public who was packed in around the stage, Alborch spoke about the need to look for personal autonomy, to find the freedom that allows us to choose any model of life, "To have someone beside you who doesn't understand you, makes you feel more alone," she affirmed. After defending "quality relationships" and pointing out that "the fear of solitude is worse than solitude itself" the former minister of culture said that women demand their say because they were not listened to for a long time, but she commented that silence is needed so that they can "listen and deafen themselves." She also referred to the subtleties of solitude, "The solitude of an old woman who lives with few economic resources in the metropolitan area is not the same as the solitude of a young woman who works and is surrounded by a context of daily relationships." She pointed out that, in any case, we are all complete beings, capable of discovering many things if we open ourselves to curiosity. "We are all worth the same," she concluded.

Carmen Alborch completely agreed with the project of the law of gender violence. She stated that it is the best path for solving the drama of the abuse of women and stressed that "this project takes on from prevention to strategies to impede threats from being fulfilled, and it also offers the possibility for victims to restructure their life." She also assessed that the project is being established by listening both to women's associations as to experts in different fields to collect all the opinions capable of combating a problem that goes beyond specific cases: affects society in general, "Abuse reflects the misogyny that, regretfully, continues to exist in our society."

To correct this situation, she demanded, "an education of values that is neither exclusive nor excluding, where all of society advances in equality and in respect to diversity." We need to want to listen to one another. Sometimes, we only need to pay a little bit of attention to get to know someone else better," she assured. Carmen Alborch reminded us "hegemonic culture has overvalued the positive aspect of masculinity and devalued the qualities linked to women." She emphasized that the positive qualities do not have to be inherited by either of the two sexes.

When asked about the political role that Ana Botella performs, and the influence that it can have on women, Carmen Alborch answered that "male and female politicians should be judged by their public behavior, by their commitments and by their political programs." "If I have to criticize one, I'll criticize Aznar," she added.

Carmen Alborch studied Law and directed the Valencia Institute of Modern Art between 1988 and 1993. Although she has been politically active in the PSOE for only one year, she was the Minister of Culture from 1993 to 1996, during the government of Felipe González. Among other awards and acknowledgements, she received the Gran Cruz de Carlos III and the Award of Progressive Women. In the last session, she chaired the Committee of Control of RTVE in the Congress of Representatives. She is currently a representative of Valencia and an author of, among other works, "Solas (Alone)" and "Malas (Bad)."

Carmen Alborch´s intervention is set within the context of the Dialogue "Live and Live Together. Women's World Forum" that is being held from July 29 to 31. The Dialogue is based on one main idea: a fair world and the development of democratic society is not possible without the participation of half of humanity.