Sheryl Crow; FGM; Eileen Atkins

Sheryl Crow sings her latest single, Easy and tells us about cancer, adopting her sons and her latest album. New government measures to tackle FGM - we get reaction from Naana Otoo-Oyortey from Forward. Eileen Atkins on performing Shakespeare's greatest female characters. Actor, Briony Rawle and casting director Lucinda Syson discuss the experience of women in casting. And Barbara Taylor on her book The Last Asylum: A Memoir of Madness in Our Times which recounts the experiences which led to her admission and 21 years of psychoanalysis which, she claims, "saved her life".

Presented by Jenni Murray
Produced by Jane Thurlow.

Release date:

Available now

58 minutes

Last on

Thu 6 Feb 2014 10:00

Female Genital Mutilation

Today is the International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation, a practice where the genitals of a girl are cut and stitched, eradicating sexual pleasure. The Department of Health have announced this morning that as of April 2014 all NHS hospitals must provide information on patients who been the victim of FGM. They will collect, share and use this information to shape future provision of healthcare services, and to support social services to safeguard girls, and help the police with future prosecutions. Jenni talks to Naana Otoo-Oyortey, Executive Director of FORWARD, the Foundation for Women's Health Research and Development. 

If you are concerned that a child is at risk, call the NSPCC's free 24-hour FGM helpline on 0800 028 3550 or email


Orchid Project

Equality Now


Eileen Atkins, Ellen Terry and Shakespeare’s Women

Dame Eileen Atkins is currently on stage playing Ellen Terry in the new candlelit Sam Wannamaker Playhouse at the Globe. The play is an exploration of Shakespeare's  female characters, Eileen joins Jenni to talk about the appeal of Shakespeare’s women and the challenges of a one woman performance.


Ellen Terry with Dame Eileen Atkins

Sexism in TV and film casting

The casting couch long used to have a reputation for being sexist. In 2012, Susan Sarandon admitted to having been groped on the casting couch and for the past year, an actress – who goes by the name of Miss L – has been publishing lines from unusual casting calls on Twitter via @ProResting and on her Tumblr blog account named Casting Call Woe. The vast majority of which have been selected as examples of how inappropriate some casting calls can be: ‘Fake Boobs are a Plus’ , ‘Pretty Girl’ and ‘You may be wearing small amounts of clothing to appeal to the men.' Today Woman’s Hour asks whether this really is the common experience of women today?

Sheryl Crow

Singer-songwriter Sheryl Crow has enjoyed huge success across her 20 year music career, with hits like All I Wanna Do, and If It Makes You Happy, and winning nine Grammy’s along the way. However she’s also had to deal with unexpected challenges life has thrown at her - her ill-fated romance with Lance Armstrong, and breast cancer and brain tumour diagnoses - and has happily gone on to adopt two young boys as a single mother. She’s made a new home in Nashville with her sons, near where she once grew up, and has now made an album of country music, which she’s perhaps aptly titled Feels Like Home. Sheryl Crow joined Jenni Murray to talk about her recent life, how it has inspired her new album, and to play her track Easy, live in the Woman’s Hour studio.

Sheryl Crow’s new album is Feels Like Home.

Barbara Taylor

Barbara Taylor began psychoanalysis in 1981 after suffering anxiety, insomnia and addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs.  During twenty-one years of daily counselling, Barbara experienced serious mental illness and spent periods of time in Friern Hospital in London, an old-fashioned “asylum” which closed in 1993. In her memoir The Last Asylum: A Memoir of Madness in Our Times, Barbara recounts the experiences which led to her admission and describes the process of psychoanalysis which, she claims, “saved her life”.


Role Contributor
PresenterJenni Murray
Interviewed GuestSheryl Crow
Interviewed GuestNaana Otoo-Oyortey
Interviewed GuestEileen Atkins
Interviewed GuestLucinda Syson
Interviewed GuestBriony Rawle
Interviewed GuestBarbara Taylor
ProducerJane Thurlow

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