The Shameless! Podcast: Voices From the Festival
This podcast series brings the Shameless! Festival to you. Speakers from the 2021 festival of activism against sexual violence speak to members of the SHaME team about their work, their reflections on the festival itself and provide key insights on the road towards a rape-free world. Please note that these conversations contain discussions of sexual violence.
Episode 3 feat. Helena Kennedy
In this podcast, George Severs speaks to the barrister and parliamentarian Baroness Helena Kennedy. Baroness Kennedy speaks about the idea of shame and shamelessness, her work with the Scottish Parliament recommending making misogyny a hate crime, and the role of the law in achieving a rape free world.
Baroness Helena Kennedy QC has practiced at the Bar for 40 years in the field of criminal law. She is recognised as one of the seminal forces in reforming the legal profession’s attitude to gender equality and minority access. She was Master of Mansfield College, Oxford for several years and was responsible for creating the ground breaking Bonavero Institute of Human Rights, Oxford. A member of the Microsoft Technology and Human Rights Advisory Council and a member of the Justice and Home Affairs Committee. She is the Chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University and the Chair of the Misogyny and Criminal Justice in Scotland Working Group. She is the Director of the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute.
Episode 2 feat. Winnie M. Li
In this episode, George Severs speaks to the novelist Winnie M Li. Winnie discusses her first novel Dark Chapters which is a fictionalised account of her real-life stranger rape, as well as her new novel Complicit. This conversation discusses the role of fiction in writing about sexual violence, and Winnie’s reflections on the Shameless Festival. Please join us for the launch of Complicit on June 22!
Winnie M Li is an author and activist. COMPLICIT is her second novel, which draws from her earlier career in the film industry. A Harvard graduate, Winnie worked as a film producer before her life was disrupted by a violent stranger rape in Belfast in 2008. Her debut novel, Dark Chapter, is a fictional retelling of her rape from victim and perpetrator perspectives. Translated into ten languages, it won The Guardian’s Not The Booker Prize and was nominated for the Edgar Award for Best First Novel. Winnie is also Co-Founder of the Clear Lines Festival, the UK’s first-ever festival addressing sexual assault and consent through the arts and discussion. Her PhD research at the London School of Economics explores media engagement by rape survivors as a form of activism. Winnie has given over 100 public talks and appeared on the BBC, Sky News, Channel 4, The Guardian, The Mail on Sunday, The Times, The Irish Times, and TEDx London. She holds an honorary doctorate of law from the National University of Ireland in recognition of her writing and activism, and served as Writer-in-Residence at The SHaME Project at Birkbeck University. Her second novel Complicit will be published in 2022.
Episode 1 feat. Laura Bates
In this podcast, George Severs speaks to Laura Bates, founder of the Everyday Sexism Project. In this conversation, which took place at the 2021 Shameless! Festival at the Battersea Arts Centre, Laura reflects on her experience at the festival and shares some details of the panel on which she spoke which looked at ‘everyday sexual violence’.
Laura Bates is the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project, an ever-increasing collection of over 200,000 testimonies of gender inequality, with branches around the world. She works closely with politicians, police forces, businesses, schools and organisations from the United Nations to the Council of Europe to tackle sexism and sexual violence. Her campaigning and advocacy work has seen Facebook change its policies on sexual violence, helped British Transport Police to transform its approach to sexual assaults, increasing both reports and detection of offenders dramatically, and contributed to putting consent and healthy relationships on the national curriculum. She is Patron of Somerset and Avon Rape and Sexual Abuse Support and contributor at Women Under Siege, a New York-based organisation working to end the use of rape as a weapon of war in conflict zones worldwide. She is a bestselling author of many books, including Everyday Sexism, Girl Up and Men Who Hate Women and writes regularly for the New York Times, Guardian, Telegraph and others. Laura is an honorary fellow at St John’s College Cambridge and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
A very special thank you to Tom Severs for his help editing and producing this podcast series.
This collaborative podcast series was created by:
Dr Rhian Keyse is a postdoctoral researcher on the SHaME project. She is a social and cultural historian of gender in modern Africa. Her doctoral research examined international, imperial, and local responses to forced and early marriage in British colonial Africa. Her current project examines the histories of medico-legal responses to sexual violence in (post)colonial Anglophone Africa, c.1920-1985, with a particular focus on Ghana and Kenya. Prior to joining the project, Rhian worked in the gender-based violence sector, most recently providing trauma support to homeless women with experiences of sexual violence.
Dr George Severs is a postdoctoral research fellow on the SHaME project. He is an historian of HIV/AIDS, activism, religion and sexuality in modern Britain. George’s doctoral research examined the history of HIV/AIDS activism in England between 1982 and 1997, covering radical direct-action groups such as ACT UP (the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power), as well as less conventionally accepted modes of activism which pushed for changes in workplaces, religious settings, universities and amongst medical practitioners. George’s postdoctoral research concerns the impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic on medics and sexual health advisors who dealt with survivors of sexual harm and violence in the UK. George is Secretary of the Oral History Society’s LGBTQ special interest group and Public History Editor of Oral History.
Joanna Bourke is Professor of History at Birkbeck, University of London, Professor of Rhetoric at Gresham College, and a Fellow of the British Academy. She is the Principal Investigator of the SHaME project. She is the prize-winning author of fifteen books, as well as over 100 articles in academic journals. Among others, she is the author of Rape: A History from the 1860s to the Present (2007), What it Means To Be Human: Reflections from 1791 to the Present (2011), and The Story of Pain: From Prayer to Painkillers (2014). Reaktion Books will publish Disgrace: Global Reflections on Sexual Violence in July 2022. Her books have been translated into Chinese, Russian, Spanish, Catalan, Italian, Portuguese, Czech, Turkish, and Greek. She is a frequent contributor to TV and radio shows, and a regular correspondent for newspapers.