DAR­REN KENNEDY

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Life - - SHUTTERBUG -

TV pre­sen­ter To me, feminism is about your value sys­tem. Do you value each per­son as an equal? Ob­vi­ously, in pro­grammes like The Unem­ploy­ables and Gay Daddy, I’m con­sciously ex­plor­ing modern so­ci­ety and how open op­por­tu­ni­ties are to all. There are so many won­der­ful men and women in my life who in­spire me, most es­pe­cially my mam and dad, who in­stilled in me the val­ues that I bring to ev­ery­thing I do. Of all the strong fe­male role mod­els, my late granny Lily, in par­tic­u­lar, stands out. She held down three jobs while rais­ing three chil­dren on her own in a pretty chau­vin­is­tic Dublin of the 1950s and 1960s. She was strong, in­domitable, lov­ing and great fun. Fun­nily, she would never, ever have called her­self a fem­i­nist, but she never ac­cepted un­fair treat­ment. I’ve al­ways thought that Ir­ish women in par­tic­u­lar pos­sess a very ob­vi­ous in­ner strength and emo­tional in­tel­li­gence. The word ‘fem­i­nist’ can be con­tentious, and car­ries with it some rather un­usual con­no­ta­tions, which I think can put some peo­ple off us­ing it. The bot­tom line is that men and women should be treated with­out bias, but un­for­tu­nately we’re very of­ten blind to all of the sub­tle ways that bias creeps in. I think if we fo­cus here, great so­lu­tions are pos­si­ble.

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