For the second episode of Graeae and Disability Arts Online’s The Disability And…Podcast, writer, visual and performance artist, gobscure talks to Disability Arts Online’s Editor, Colin Hambrook about psychiatry through the lens of the social model of disability. They discuss the power of language, the languages around mental health and how gobscure’s writing has been influenced by that of historical writers such as Mary Wollstonecraft, Jessie Kesson, and John Clare, in telling stories about creative resistance.
For the podcast, gobscure reflects on a long-term project ‘hyena in petticoats’ – inspired by the life and the writings of Mary Wollstonecraft notably her collected letters, and Maria: or, The Wrongs of Woman.
They talk about their play ‘Collector of Tears’, which was awarded the Best Northeast New Play of 2014 by the British Theater Guide. Described as a theatrical Orlando for our times, it’s a warm-hearted narrative about history, oppression, and loss in which its protagonist Tonya Sealt tells stories of love and resistance, packing over 300 years of history into an hour’s monologue.
Gobscure also discusses their most recent play, joey, which has just been on preview tour and is this year’s Wolsey Theatre Testing Ground commission, produced in association with Greyscale Theatre, and now published as a book by Aurora Metro. joey tells the story of three teenagers growing up in the care system in the UK in the 1980s. Disabled author Joey Deacon appears on BBC TV’s Blue Peter and overnight ‘joey’ becomes a term of abuse in schoolyards across the country. In a bid to define themselves, their gender and sexuality against the establishment imposition of an identity that writes them off, the 3 protagonists of gobscure’s play reclaim ‘joey’ as a positive badge of honour.
Episode 2. Disability and…Psychiatry is available to listen to via the embedded Soundcloud player below, and also on the following podcast platforms:
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