Benny Andersson is a musician, composer and feminist. Founding member of Swedish pop sensation ABBA and composer of beloved musicals like ”Mamma Mia” and ”Chess”. In this post he shares his thoughts on gender equality with the help of the film The Hours (2002) by Stephen Daldry.
“I had an idea of our happiness!“ says John C Rilley’s character Dan Brown to his wife Laura, played by Julianne Moore, in a scene from The Hours. While she reluctantly listens, he tells her and their son about when he was stationed in the South Pacific during the war and how he was determined to give her a home and a life.
He seems to be a very kind man, who would do anything for his wife. Yet, we see a husband who regards his life partner as just a mere extension of himself. Eventually, after being forced to the verge of suicide by this intolerable patriarchal state of things, Laura deserts her family.
Food for thought, isn’t it? This story takes place in the United States during the 1950′s, but has the situation really changed?
We would generally say in Sweden that we have come a long way on the path of gender equality, but if you ask me, the longest distance is still to be covered.
How about starting with equal money for equal work?
As for another film: Does anyone believe that the screenplay for Straw Dogs (1971) could have been written by a woman?
Photo: Peter Knutson
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