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Entertaining women

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‘Fame is fickle, and I know it. It has its compensations but it also has its drawbacks, and I’ve experienced them both.’  - Marilyn Monroe

Every sphere of entertainment can boast many memorable and outstanding female performers; from the leading ladies of the silver screen, dancers, singers, musicians and entertainers.

Those who achieved fame in the twentieth century were all too often beset by insecurities and personal demons and many found their fame difficult to live with. There was the enormous pressure of having to conform to gender stereotypes and, as times changed, they had to deal with the kickback of the feminist movement. To add to their woes, their careers were frequently controlled by men – the producers, directors and sometimes unscrupulous managers of the entertainment industry.

Now women are taking on a much wider variety of roles in the world of entertainment and influencing their own careers and building their own images. Furthermore, the recent ground-breaking #MeToo and Time’s Up women’s empowerment movements have upended public conversation about women’s issues around the world - paying particular reference to the entertainment industry - and elevated the global consciousness surrounding the obstacles women encounter in their daily lives, both personal and professional.

Discover the real-life ups and downs of some famous names: Marilyn Monroe, Diana Dors, Carole Lombard, Jayne Mansfield and Jean Harlow. Find out more about the amazing career of singer Dorothy Squires and how the late Nell Gifford turned her love of the circus into founding one of her own. But, above all, find out what it is really like to be a woman in the entertainment industry.                                                   

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