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Reenacting a 1972 men-on-feminism community radio show

Andrea Fraser

Andrea Fraser

This should be interesting: performance artist Andrea Fraser will reenact the voices of four men speaking candidly about feminism on a 1972 KPFK-FM radio show. The event is called “Men on the Line: Men Committed to Feminism.”  Fraser performs as all four participants based on excerpts of what they said during the Los Angeles based broadcast. The performance happens at the Brava Theater in San Francisco on October 30 and is a benefit for the Pacifica Foundation / Pacifica Radio Archives. Pacifica owns KPFK’s license.

The Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts in San Francisco describes Fraser as ” a commanding performer, incredibly skilled at rotating through casts of composite characters (inevitably voiced from historical record), with slight changes of physical manner or tonal inflection.” 1972 was a crucial year for what historians often call “second wave feminism” (the first wave took place in the early 20th-century and culminated with women winning the vote in 1920). By 1970 feminist advocates were scoring huge victories in the courts, among them a decision barring employers from creating separate categories for women and men so as to pay the former less (see airline “stewardesses”). By 1971 Ms. Magazine was underway. In 1972 a congressional amendment banned discrimination against women and girls in schools.

So bottom line: guys had a bunch of stuff to think about by that year and much of it showed up on the radio.

Excepts from the radio program in question can be found on the Pacifica Radio Archive’s SoundCloud page. Here’s one to consider:

The recovery of the program and the performance heralds the conclusion of the Archive’s big project American Women Making History, which includes the digitization of nearly 1,700 reel-to-reel tapes.

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