Mon, Sep 09, 2019 - Page 8 News List

In Nepal, a play takes on #MeToo

In the wake of the #MeToo movement, the Nepali rendition ‘Private is Political — Vagina Monologues 4.0’ gives life to real stories about harassment

By Paavan Mathema  /  AFP, KATHMANDU

Lamsal said the lack of consequences for the accused was extremely discouraging and a reason why #MeToo failed to gain traction in Nepal.

“Unless they face some kind of action it does not create a space or environment for others to come forward and speak. The hope of any form of justice is gone,” she says.

Rehearsals for the play took on more resonance when prominent theatre industry figures faced #MeToo accusations, with female actors recounting incidents of inappropriate touching on the pretext of play rehearsals. In a rare instance for Nepal, theatre groups took a stance against the accused and mediation sessions were held in the same venue that showed the play.

Actor Loonibha Tuladhar said the timing gave more context to the production.

But the play has also been slammed for being “too strong” or “anti-men” by some in the Nepali theatre circles. She says: “In a way, we’ve won our game because people are listening to it, people are observing and reacting to it.”

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