Caitlin Moran : Moranifesto

I don't think you ever forget the first time you discovered Caitlin Moran.

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Mine was whilst on holiday in Italy a good few years back; I was up the top of a massive hill in Tuscany, having a day to myself at the house my family and I were staying in (they'd gone out and left me in peace for the day), hosed down in SPF 50, sat in the garden with a book. I read How To Be A Woman that day, quickly, as I was unable to put the thing down. It made me laugh and cry, nod my head in frantic agreement and go home telling all my friends who had not yet read this book to get on board, pronto.

I'd say Caitlin Moran is responsible for me becoming a feminist in terms that I can understand. As a Margaret Atwood fan, you're an instant feminist the moment you read The Handmaid's Tale (and what an introduction that was at age 17) but it's something I understand more as I've aged. I've been around a bit more; I've switched careers, I've met different people, experienced differences of opinion, I've been in and come out of relationships, I've been in internet cat-fights, I've be sexually harassed (verbally and physically) on the street, I've stood up for women's rights. Essentially, I've experienced what feminism stands for and tries to make people listen to. I went from 0-60mph in the last ten years, Caitlin just helped give it a voice and a platform I could understand and relate to within my day to day life.

Since  How to Be a Woman, I've read Moranthology, How To Build A Girl and if you haven't watched Raised By Wolves and fallen madly in love with Della, then I can no longer speak to you; she's probably one of my all-time favourite characters on tv. 

Needless to say, when a tweet appeared about Caitlin talking at the Royal Festival Hall this month as part of the Women of the World Festival, I jumped to get myself a ticket. The event, titled the same as her latest book,  Moranifesto.





This event was live streamed on YouTube on the evening (I hope you all saw the link on Twitter so you could watch it) and was a good 100 minutes of Caitlin reading some sections from her new book, discussing International Women's Day (the day the gig fell on) and chatting about how she fell into writing this book. (Highlights can be found here.)

Moranifesto is to politics what How to be a Woman is to feminism. It covers the everything from revolutions to muppet faces. It's Caitlin's toe-dip into politics without the staunch political background, it's her writing down the things we talk about in the office on a quiet Friday afternoon - if we were in charge of the world, what would we do differently?

Not only is Caitlin talking about this, again, she's encouraging everyone else to do so via her YouTube channel: 



Got an idea? Make a one minute video and send it to her. For example: I have a desk drawer with approximately ten different boxes of tea in it. I reckon if an emergency G20 summit had to be held in my office (because why wouldn't it be in Kew Bridge?) I could solve most of the worlds problems by making sure everyone had a beverage which made them feel comfy. All tastes catered for. Seriously, this shit is important and I'd be willing to give it a go. I doubt you could launch an attack on a country when you've just been given a cup of Twining's Cherry Bakewell Green Tea, but that might just be me. I have an emergency stash Malteaser Bunnies too, just in case tea isn't your thing. Go on, send her an idea, we can change the world! 

As usual, Caitlin's writing is so real (I want to say woke, as that's how we refer to this on the internet, she's too woke) it makes you feel all the emotions. During the readings we were treated to that evening the audience around me were crying with laughter and crying real, deep, felt tears at some points (her letter to teenage girls on the edge floored my entire row; we were wiping mascara off our faces afterwards and sniffing away tears for the following 10 minutes). It's all the emotions and it's brilliant to put them all out there to feel. I LOVE THE FEELS.

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Plus, as she had brilliant sign interpreters, I learned the BSL for 'asshat' and 'camel toe' that night, and that washing your tights in the machine shatters the Lycra.  And people say you don't learn new things everyday, COME ONNNNNNN. 

I listened to the book on Audible, but it's definitely one I will buy in book form and annotate wildly. It's passionate without being preachy and makes you think. Inspirational books are what makes the world talk, so this feels like something important and engaging.

It's almost revolutionary, but we'll go with the second definition in the dictionary (as Caitlin requests), not the first.

When you read it, come and  talk to me about it on Twitter, I can't wait to hear your thoughts. 
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2 comments:

  1. I've just started this on audiobook and know I am going to love it as felt the same about all the other books. That night must have been amazing (not jealous at all!).

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  2. I hope you enjoy it! Caitlin is definitely one to experience live.

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