Ep. 21: Magnifying Masculinity, Kate Tempest, Desiree Akhavan
A year on from the launch of the #metoo movement, Stance explores what has been hailed as a new era in masculinity. We hear from renowned sociologist Dr Raewyn Connell who was one of the earliest academics to study masculinity.
Stance discusses masculinity with performance artist and writer Scottee, whose current work challenges society’s ideas of ‘fat blokes’ and their place in the world. Fat Blokes is described as “a sort of dance show about flab, double chins and the men they are attached to” and uncovers why fat men are never sexy but are always funny, always the ‘before’ but never the ‘after’ shot.
Next up, Stance heads to Rwanda - where traditional ideas of masculinity are being challenged and reshaped. Despite women making up more than half the seats Parliament, at home, women still face high levels of sexual violence. We speak to Promundo, an international organization promoting gender justice, who have created a program called MenCare which works with men as they become fathers to address gender-based inequality with astounding results.
Stance also interviews activist and Emmy-award winning filmmaker Deeyah Khan who recently released the BAFTA-winning documentary Jihad: A Story of the Others, and Bafta and Emmy-nominated film White Right: Meeting The Enemy. We wanted to know what Deeyah had learnt about masculinity, having immersed herself in the terrifying world of male-dominated extremist ideologies.
Lastly, out of the MeToo movement against sexual harassment came Times Up - a legal defense fund set up by Hollywood celebrities to support the most vulnerable women. The steady trickle of stories about the sheer scale about the alleged abuse by Harvey Weinstein and others has been a wake-up call for an Industry that clearly turned a blind eye or colluded in a system of sexual exploitation. Stance heads to the Young Vic in London to talk to theatre and filmmaker Nadia Latif. She spoke to Stance about the importance that power plays in the movement and how it shouldn’t forget its roots.
Stance profiles poet, musical artist and writer Kate Tempest. In 2013, she won the prestigious Ted Hughes Award for her poetry Brand New Ancients, and her albums Everybody Down and Let Them Eat Chaos has been nominated for the Mercury Music Prize. Stance hears about her new poetry collection Running Upon The Wires and her infinite love of language.
Finally, in ours arts piece, Stance catches up with award-winning writer, director and actor Desiree Akhavan to find out more about her new comedy-drama series The Bisexual which stars BAFTA-nominated actor Maxine Peake. Akhavan co-wrote and directed The Miseducation of Cameron Post, which won the Grand Jury Prize at this year’s Sundance. She talks about why she feels bisexuality is one of the last taboos.
Stance Cultural Shoutouts: