This week’s Archetypes podcast is “The Audacity of the Activist with Jameela Jamil and Shohreh Aghdashloo.” The Duchess of Sussex focuses on how women’s activism is diminished, mocked, ignored and marginalized across all spectrums of society. Meghan also speaks with Ilana Glazer and Lisa Tetrault, author of The Myth of Seneca Falls. I like the framing Meghan and Ilana Glazer made about “hiding your vegetables,” as in women feeling the need to soften their opinions or activism to make everything more palatable. Here’s the pod:
Honestly, for years I haven’t really been able to stand Jameela Jamil, but I listened to most of Meghan’s interview with her and I came out of it feeling differently. Meghan gives her a platform to discuss the proliferation of diet culture online, then they talk about how the media has gone after her. Jamil is right – we’re rarely seeing celebrities posting about their “fat-burning teas” or diet whatever, and she was a huge part of that change. Jamil also admits that she entered spaces and conversations that she shouldn’t have, which is a huge reason why I tuned her out years ago – she thought she was the most important person to ever speak on every issue, ever. There’s a difference between “bold, loud and passionate activist” and “a narcissist using various causes to get attention for themselves.” Jameela was both at various times.
This pod, for me, got a lot more interesting when Meghan talks to Lisa Tetrault about the history of women’s activism and women’s movements, from the Suffrage movement, to Angela Davis, Gloria Steinem and Tarana Burke. Then around the 37-minute mark, Meghan begins speaking to Shohreh Aghdashloo, the Iranian actress and activist. She was an actress in Iran before the 1979 revolution and she, like many Iranians, fled their country under the ayatollah. Shohreh made me cry – she spoke about what it was like after the shah was overthrown and how she was stoned by pro-revolutionaries. Meghan uses this conversation to highlight the murder of Mahsa Amini by Iran’s morality police and the subsequent protests all around Iran, with women removing the hijabs, cutting their hair and fighting for their rights.
Photos courtesy of Spotify, Archewell, Avalon Red.