Oh God, I’ve got PMF. Post Modern Feminism. On the Brain. Being away from the family for the Edinburgh festival performing in Mother F, a comedy about mothers is post (or is it post post post modern? – how many posts?) modern feminist irony. Doing a show about motherhood, having a mother, being a mother when I am NOT performing my duties as a real life mother. This thought has been jostling around argumentatively in my head since I landed in Edinburgh. Can one be a feminist AND be a mother? If feminism means women working out of the home and making their own decisions and working equally side by side with men then I am a post modern feminist. Does it make me less of a mother? Will my two female children suffer because of my PMF?
I love feminism, I just don’t feel like I am a good one. I endeavour to be a better PMF. Looking around at the other shows at the Edinburgh festival there are plenty of shows that are women lead and women producers and more women at the helm commissioning work. It’s refreshing, positive. And there are still shows that pander depressingly to titillate men with bikini and tongue flashing leaflets to shows all about dealing with the disempowerment of women and S&M or female stand ups talking dirty for the benefit of men. I am surprised by this as a PMF in 2013. Do women still feel that they have to wear a bikini to get people in to see their show like women did in the 1970’s to sell cars? I’m no prude but this rubs my sexual politics up the wrong way.
On the positive side, there are brilliant shows like Croft and Pearce, a slick sketch show that should be on the telly now and if they don’t get picked up I shall eat my copy of vintage Spare Rib. There’s the all female Titus Andronicus, Stephanie Preissner’s ‘Solpadeine is my boyfriend,’ and the very funny ‘Women of an Uncertain Age,’ Bridget Christie, Viv Groskop, Katie Goodman. Just to name a handful off the top of my head. And while I am here on the uncertain age debate that goes on for every actress over the age of thirty we must abandon the classical canon. We PMF’s must keep writing parts for women of all ages. Let’s make PMF visible and vocal. Come on the Women!