The Edinburgh Fringe has kicked off again, and while the city filling with excited people doing crazy things is great, it also can be a bit of a reality-check for those of us who are accustomed to living in a happy feminist bubble of joy at uni, colliding with bigotry only when we venture online or into class or… yeah, well, anyway, the point is that when the world comes to Edinburgh, some of that world sucks. It’s incredible how many performers still think sexist/homophobic/ableist/transphobic/classist/generally just offensive jokes are funny and a way to get the audience to like them. If you’ve not read this great response to Daniel Tosh’s rape jokes earlier this year, you should, because it hits the nail on the head as far as the line between comedy and bigotry goes.
If the Edinburgh Fringe is the place where the best performers of tomorrow are discovered, the up-and-comings judged and critiqued and celebrated, then we need to make sure that what the Fringe’s audiences demand is work that challenges bigotry, not that entrenches it. We can’t ignore the misogyny and chauvinism of the Fringe; its scale is too huge for us to let it go unnoticed. So let’s celebrate the work that champions women and minorities, and condemn that which rests on the hope that its audiences is as bigoted as them.
So please tell us which shows are good and which are bad, and we’ll add them to our list every evening. Comment on the blog, use the hashtag #bigotrybashing (don’t forget to use #edfringe so others following the fringe see it) or email email@example.com