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The History of the Single Girl

24 February 2015

My radio drama-documentary The History of the Single Girl is getting its first broadcast on ABC Radio National’s Radiotonic on Friday 27 February at 11:00 am, repeated Sunday 1 March at 3:00 pm, and available online and to download as a podcast. Here.

The piece was actually commissioned a while back under the ‘old regime’ for a program that no longer exists. So it’s great that it’s now finally been made with Creative Audio Unit producer Julie Shapiro. And featuring actors Matt Edgerton and Alice Parkinson.

Onslow Gardens, west London

‘Sometimes it’s really hard to walk in a single woman’s shoes. That’s why we need really special ones now and then to make the walk a little more fun.’ Carrie from Sex and the City.

Almost 2 centuries earlier Jane Austen’s Emma said: ‘I shall not be a poor old maid; and it is poverty only which makes celibacy contemptible to a generous public! But a single woman, of good fortune, is always respectable, and may be as sensible and pleasant as anybody else.’

At least the contemporary single girl can pay her bills—and treat herself to a pair of designer shoes. And of course modern singledom no longer means saying No to sex.

Catherine, Christmas Day 1971 copy

Catherine, December 1971

The History of the Single Girl unrolled from my quest to understand the tragic death of my cousin, Catherine, in a west London bedsit in the early 1970s. Because official documents and hazy family memories offered only a partial account, I expanded my search to explore the bigger picture of society’s often uneasy relationship with single women.

From → Audio

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