Naomi Wolf and Sandi Toksvig to headline Women of the World Festival

Naomi Wolf and Sandi Toksvig to headline Women of the World Festival

Naomi Wolf, Shazia Mirza, Scarlett Curtis, Sandi Toksvig and Mary Robinson will headline the 10th Women of the World (WOW) Festival in London in March 2020. 

WOW Festival will run from 6th to 8th March 2020 across International Women’s Day at Southbank Centre, London.

Ticketed events announced today include an evening to mark and examine 30 years since the publication of Wolf’s The Beauty Myth (Vintage). ‘The Beauty Myth: 30 Years On’ will feature Wolf alongside a panel of special guests to explore what has changed since the book’s publication. Toksvig will return to WOW to meet her personal heroes for ‘How the Hell did I Get Here?’, billed by organisers as “a revealing and witty evening discovering her VIP guests’ journeys to the very top”.

“Tackling one of the world’s most pressing issues, ‘Climate Justice: A Man-made Problem with a Feminist Solution’ will feature a panel of leading thinkers to explore possible solutions to the climate emergency, including former President of Ireland and leading humanitarian activist Mary Robinson, and activists,” organisers of the annual festival said. “WOW will also tackle what it means to be a British woman today in 'Britishness and Power', an evening examining the impact the UK’s changing political landscape has on our identities. The timely event will feature a diverse line-up of women to discuss what British Values are and who, if anyone,  are the keepers of them.” 

Comedian Shazia Mirza will bring her show ‘Coconut’ to WOW as part of her acclaimed UK tour, and there will be live recordings of podcasts – ‘Scarlett Curtis: Feminists Don’t Wear Pink Live’ and ‘The Guilty Feminist at WOW’.

Booker shortlisted author Elif Shafak will also speak at the festival with other sessions including the impact of motherhood in 'Damned if You Do, Damned if You Don’t' in partnership with the Primadonna Festival; 'Where are the Working Class Asians?', featuring a discussion with women working in industries from the arts to the sciences; and a journey through 'Badass Women from History'. Previously announced WOW London 2020 events include author and campaigner Caroline Criado Perez discussing 'Invisible Women; Don’t Touch My Hair', following her win of the £25,000 Royal Society Science Book Prize in September about the gender data gap Invisible Women (Chatto & Windus).

Wolf said: “I’m so honoured to be joining WOW again, this time to explore 'The Beauty Myth - 30 Years On'. We’ll look, no doubt, at the impact women have made in regards to the issues raised then, and shine a light on what still needs to be addressed. If an organisation can be a heroine, WOW is mine.”

The WOW Foundation was founded by Kelly in 2018 to run the global movement as an independent charitable organisation.  Ts. Led by Kelly, the organisation works to build, convene and sustain a global movement that believes a gender equal world is possible and desirable through WOW festivals and empowering women and girls. WOW festivals are presented by arrangement with Southbank Centre.

The final programme for London will be announced on 16th January.