Stacey Dooley : Women Who Fight Back

A commentary

Anyone that knows me, knows that I am a big fan of Stacey Dooley. I have a LOT of respect for her, and know that I couldn’t do even a quarter of what she has done.

She’s not perfect, and I think she’d be the first person to admit that. She makes mistakes sometimes, but then, so do we all. I think sometimes, that she is judged a little too harshly by some people, bearing in mind their own track record!

Some people say that she’s just a ‘chav that got lucky’, but I think this is complete, ignorant, rubbish. The truth is that she had a humble upbringing, and that she was offered an opportunity, which she grabbed with both hands, and let’s face it, wouldn’t we all do the same, given half the chance?!

Stacey gets an awful lot of flack online from trolls and random haters. People criticise her for being young and ignorant. One politician, recently snidely likened her to a ‘white saviour’ when she shared a photo of herself with a young child of African decent, on one of her documentary shoots.

I often wonder where these people get their half baked views, and would be interested to see if, given the same opportune ity, they would take it in the brave way that Stacey does, and no matter what you think of her, we cannot deny her bravery for going to often ravaged, dangerous and possibly war torn countries.

I bought her book several months ago, and while I was excited to read it, I thought that it would be just the usual type of celeb autobiography. It wasn’t. It was far more than that.

Instead of focusing on telling us her entire life story, we see a far less self-centred approach in this book. Here we see snippets from the lives of the people that Stacey has met and interviewed over the years. We are given an intimate look into her feelings and thoughts, that perhaps, there wasn’t time to show on screen.

The book is split into sections, with each one focusing on the lives of seemingly ordinary people, caught up in terrible, and extraordinary circumstances.

In each one, we see the incredible strength of the women (because it is generally women involved in these documentaries). Stacey takes us all over the world, from Columbia, to Iraq, to Japan, showing us a small snippet of what it is like for these women.

Her honesty and compassion is clear to see, and the way that she can empathise with these people, even being moved to tears by some of the horrific stories, just shows her strength and ability as a documentarist.

This book is fast paced, and as a reader we are led from one situation to another. It is not an easy read. In fact, there were several times, when it got to be too much for me, and I had to stop reading for a while.

In conclusion, though, I feel that this book is an incredibly important one, and one that everyone should read. There were some people in this book, that I had never heard of before. For example, the Yazidi women. If you don’t know of them, then please google. I honestly couldn’t believe that I hadn’t heard anything about them on the news!

This book is one of the best, and most harrowing books that I have read this year, and I have no hesitation in recommending that you read it too.


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Li Carter is a writer, artist and crafter. She lives in South Wales, UK, with her family, and five rescue dogs. She’s on Twitter @rbcreativeli , Facebook: Rainbow Butterfly Creative, and Instagram @rainbowbutterflycreative and is the author of My Only True Friend: The Beginning. She is currently working on a new series titled The QuickSilver Chronicles. She is the original Rainbow Butterfly, and wants to fill an ever darkening world with a little bit of beauty and creativity.

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