HBO Continues #BecauseOfHer Campaign by Daring Women to “Make a Little Trouble” and Highlighting Real, Unedited Stories
During the week of March 18, 2019, HBO introduced The Inspiration Room, a public archive of women’s journals to celebrate the power of authentic, unedited voices during Women’s History Month.
Housed on Lafayette Street in Manhattan, the room hosted a variety of events and featured a collection of women’s diaries with stories spanning from the 1800s to present day. The space served as an interactive extension of HBO’s #BecauseofHer campaign, which highlights the contributions of women who work behind the scenes on HBO shows, and celebrates the audiences that watch them.
Her Voice, Unedited
Actors seen in HBO series perform stories submitted to The Inspiration Room.
Performed by Dominique Fishback of The Deuce.
Performed by Susie Essman of Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Performed by Margarita Levieva of The Deuce.
Performed by Angela Sarafyan of Westworld.
Performed by Natalie Gold of Succession.
Performed by Poorna Jagannathan of The Night Of.
The physical space spotlighted journals in various forms, including compilation books, large-scale installations and audio recordings, among other forms of self-expression. The Inspiration Room also featured a series of videos that brought several of the contributors’ stories to life through dramatic readings by actors Dominique Fishback (The Deuce), Natalie Gold (Succession), Margarita Levieva (The Deuce), Susie Essman (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Angela Sarafyan (Westworld) and Poorna Jagannathan (The Night Of, Big Little Lies). The videos cover a range of women’s experiences, including the trials and tribulations of dating, a father’s affair, and surviving breast cancer.
See the full Inspiration Room panel discussion about women in power.
Hundreds of women all over the country contributed to the space, including some of HBO’s own talent, including Lena Dunham (Girls, Camping), Issa Rae (Insecure), Amanda Crew (Silicon Valley), Michelle MacLaren (director, Game of Thrones) and Lisa Joy (co-creator/executive producer/director, Westworld). To bring different expressions of the female voice to life inside The Inspiration Room, original programming over the week featured guest speakers, intimate talks and additional interactive sessions. Events included: a conversation with Padma Lakshmi and Soledad O’Brien; a live podcast recording with theSkimm and Sarah Goldberg of Barry; a sneak peek screening of upcoming HBO series Gentleman Jack; a writers workshop with HBO alum; as well as events hosted by Bustle and The Wing.
Many of the stories we received were uplifting, funny, resilient, deeply personal, tragic and moving. If you are carrying a heavy story you want to share, please consider these resources.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
RAINN/National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline: 1-800-656-4673
National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration: 1-800-662-HELP
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233