Interview 5 – Lauren Bok and Joanne Brookfield
“I’ve felt the steely, cold wind of a giant bomb stinking up the stage and when you get off and you’re like, I can’t look anyone in the eye…I’m going home to wash myself of the failure that is surrounding me.” Lauren Bok on a bad night at the office.
Lauren was the first of 60 women interviewed for Joanne Brookfield’s new book “No Apologies” – celebrating the power of women, their voices and their stories. When you do the math, that’s 60 interviews x 5,000 words per interview = 300,000 words that Joanne has skillfully crafted into a 65,000 word ‘must read’.
Stella questions: “Can we hope for the day when we don’t actually need the book? Where inequality at lots of levels: gender, race, disability, etc doesn’t exist?”
As Joanne points out: “The point of the book is that we’re not there yet!”
There’s a real sense of closeness among the comedy ‘sisterhood’, which stems from bizarre inequities and impossibly shaped hurdles. “We’re not allowed to get it right, but we’re always told we’re getting it wrong.”, says Joanne. It’s appears to be not just about equality, but a unique response rejecting/countering phobic, sexist material delivered up as entertainment by the comic majority.
Gender archetypes have made it a challenge for women to ‘rage on stage’.
The suggestion is that ‘permission’ is gendered – “Go for it dude! But be careful ladies”. But of course comedy has the unique ability to mock itself, holding up a mirror in a powerful medium for different points of view and diversity of perspective – inclusive regardless.
As lauren so beautifully puts it…
“Be the change you want to see in the world”
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