In 2007 I started listing women killed by known men – their names, ages and the dates of their murders for a display I use for my work with Certain Curtain Theatre Company. We write produce and tour plays exploring important social issues and have been at the forefront of domestic violence drama since 1995.
When touring with our domestic violence dramas, we have a display of media coverage of domestic violence to highlight victim-blaming reporting. The articles also highlight the lack of dv helplines and the lenient sentencing of perpetrators of male violence against women. I noticed that headlines were nearly always about the killers, their achievements, mental illness, stressful job. The names of the women they had killed rarely made the headline or front page news and if they were it was about how the women had had an affair or ended the relationship. I decided to include a list of the women killed, along with their ages in our display, to show that the women behind the statistics are real women of all ages, cultures and class and had a name.