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Maureen Beattie: ‘We need women in positions of power to beat patriarchy’

Maureen Beattie. Photo: David Jensen
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Equity president Maureen Beattie has called for more women in theatre leadership roles, claiming this is the only way to break “the terrible curse” of patriarchy.

She described patriarchy as the “curse of our present and, if we are not very, very careful, the even more terrible curse of our future”.

“The Harvey Weinsteins of this world were – are – only able to exist because of the centuries-old hierarchy based on whether you had a penis or not,” she said, adding: “It is a club where the one and only rule is keeping the power in your own hands and out of the hands of women.”

Writing in this month’s Equity magazine, she said “patriarchy ain’t going down without a fight” and claimed there were “men and boys out there who are marching with us every step of the way”.

“These guys get it – that the way forward to a better world for everyone is to get women into positions of power everywhere, including our own industry,” she added.

The Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre runs a free helpline to provide mental health and well-being support for theatre professionals. The number for the Theatre Helpline is 0800 915 4617, and the email address is advice@theatrehelpline.org.

More information about mental health support is available via ArtsMinds, a joint initiative between Equity, The Stage, the British Association for Performing Arts Medicine and Spotlight

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