Archive | March, 2014

Big Thinky Post on Permission

23 Mar

I’m going to be writing and performing a one-woman poetry show about Permission called ‘Asking Nicely’ at the Edinburgh Fringe. It’s about how, why, when and where we ask for permission. Please see my previous blog posts here and here if you’d like background.

Organising my thinking/themes for the Permission show

I think permission splits into roughly three types:

  1. ‘Classic Permission’: Asking someone who can outright turn you down: teachers, police, bosses, etc. This is the ‘Please, sir/madam, may I?’ type.
  2. ‘Equals/Social Permission’: This is probably the nicest form – a kind of social consent: ‘I’d like to go to Spain on holiday. Would you like to come with me?’ ‘Would you like to get a drink some time?’ ‘Would you like to have sex?’
  3. ‘Blessing Permission’: Asking permission when you don’t need to, but it’s good manners to.’Is this seat taken?’ ‘May I marry your daughter?’ ‘Would you excuse me?’ Etc.

None of these are completely straightforward, though – and both have implicit and explicit variations, and underlying power dynamics. Continue reading


Asking Nicely Poetry Show: Audience Participation Time!

23 Mar

I am writing a one-woman show about permission called Asking Nicely. It’s about how, why, when and where we ask for permission. And I’d like your help.

(For background you can read my first blog on the topic where I first decided on the idea, my second blog about the practicalities of an Edinburgh Fringe show,  or my third blog about what I’m thinking/looking at/reading on the topic of permission.)

I’m looking at permission through the lens of sociology and intersectional feminism – when does manners become self-sabotaging meekness? When does confidence become entitlement? And if you’re game, I’d love to get your input:

Audience participation time!

If you are interested in this project and would like to help me think my thoughts, I’d be really grateful for answers to a few questions. Continue reading

Edinburgh Show Update: Asking Nicely

23 Mar
First draft of my poster

First draft of my poster

In September last year I wrote about planning to do a one-woman poetry show on the theme of ‘permission’ at the Edinburgh Fringe. (Original blog post here.) My aim is slam poetry crossed with a TED Talk crossed with some funnies. It will look at how, why, when and where we ask for permission – looking at it through an intersectional feminist/sociological viewpoint.

Anyway, it’s now March, with the festival looming in August, so I thought I’d give an update. Continue reading