Empowerment Wins Big At The Golden Globes

Photo by Getty

In 2015, Hollywood asked the world to #AskHerMore. At the 2017 Oscars, the night's must-have accessory was an American Civil Liberties Union ribbon. At this year's Golden Globes, the first award show of the post-Weinstein era, actresses painted the town black, washing away the red carpet's color to show their solidarity with the Time’s Up movement, the latest initiative launched to organize the momentum against sexual abuse and gender inequality in and outside of Hollywood. Created last week, Time's Up already has the star-power of Natalie Portman, Kerry Washington, Emma Stone, Reese Witherspoon and hundreds of other high-visibility celebrities who have joined the leader-free movement. Wearing black-and-white Time's Up pins in their lapels, Hollywood's men showed their support for their female colleagues.

Fashion didn't have the last word at last night's award ceremony. To extend the gender parity conversation beyond Hollywood, actresses including Meryl Streep, Emma Stone, Emma Watson, Michelle Williams and Shailene Woodley brought high-impact activists as their guests. Emma Watson linked arms with Marai Marasi, Executive Director of Imkaan, an organization aimed at preventing violence against black women. Shailene Woodley invited Calina Lawrence, a Suquamish Tribe member and advocate for water rights. Best Actress nominee Meryl Streep walked the carpet with Ai-jen Poo, Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance.

“This is a moment of solidarity, not a fashion moment,” Longoria said from the Beverly Hilton. “For years, we’ve sold these awards shows as women, with our gowns and colors and our beautiful faces and our glamour. This time, the industry can’t expect us to go up and twirl around. That’s not what this moment is about.”

The first award of the night (best actress in a television movie or miniseries) went to Nicole Kidman for her nuanced portrayal of a victim of domestic violence in HBO's Big Little Lies. "The power of women," she declared, holding her statuette high. Winning for best actress in a drama series was Elisabeth Moss for her role in "The Handmaid's Tale," the screen adaptation of Margaret Atwood's chilling dystopian novel about the enslavement of women in a not-so-distant future.

Accepting the Cecil B. DeMille Award, Oprah Winfrey took the stage delivering a message with the gravitas of a presidential stump speech. Winfrey, who has been open about the sexual abuse she endured as a child, asserted that the problematic power imbalance of the patriarchy isn't an issue limited to the entertainment industry, "It’s one that transcends any culture, geography, race, religion, politics, or workplace." She invoked the names of women who fought long before TimesUp or #MeToo: Recy Taylor, a victim of a 1944 rape who courageously spoke out against her attackers (men who were never prosecuted), Rosa Parks, and Winfrey's own mother.

“For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dared to speak their truth to the power of those men. But their time is up,” said Winfrey. You. We. All. are moving into a new year and a new era looking forward to a safer, more equal, and balanced world.

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