Welcome to my female wisdom series - I'm think of rebranding it 'Decade Dames' after it was called that ! A much better description?
Today you meet Elaine, a 70 year old Malaysian woman who has lived in Britain since she was 19 years old, and who has lived alone for the last 50 years. Elaine talks about being cut off from her family, living up to old-fashioned cultural ideals and commitments. She takes us on an historical tour of her life, from the 70s, to the 80s and 90s, describing the decisions she made along the way punctuated by events such as the gulf war, Princess Diana’s wedding and the Thatcher years. This interview hi-lights the enormous cultural shift Elaine experienced by moving away from her family. She tells us what it's like to uproot and what it takes to survive alone. For me, Elaine defines female independence.
I’d also like to share some exciting news! A researcher at Derby University (who studies female agency) will be taking these interviews and analysing them as part of a fascinating research project looking at how women’s lives have changed over the years, female identity, roles, definitions of independence and agency. The researcher, Sarah, also wants to interview me as another '50' year old - so you’ll get to hear my decade interview too, along with Sarah and I talking about some of the common themes that have come up and what Sarah thinks these interviews might reveal about how women from diverse backgrounds have experienced living and working in Britain since 1930.
So, please do review this episode if you like it and share far and wide ! Email me on firstname.lastname@example.org with any feedback. Over to Elaine….Support the show