On the heels of her Emmy win for her portrayal of a woman physically abused by her husband in the HBO mini-series Big Little Lies, actress Nicole Kidman is speaking out about domestic violence. The Oscar winner wrote a powerful essay addressing the issue and how it impacts women for the latest edition of Porter Magazine.
In the moving open letter, Kidman, an U.N. Women Goodwill Ambassador for Women since 2006, reveals that as a young woman, the idea that she should be at a disadvantage because she was born a girl never occurred to her, thanks to her feminist upbringing.
“The idea that women and men are equal is part of my DNA,” wrote Kidman. “I was raised by a strong feminist mother and a fully supportive father.”
It wasn’t until Kidman assumed her role as Goodwill Ambassador and focused her efforts on raising awareness about the infringement of women’s rights around the world — and violence against women, in particular — that she recognized the link between pervasive gender inequality globally and the violence women around the world experience every day.
Storytelling appears to play a large part in Kidman’s domestic violence activism. Last month, during her Emmy award acceptance speech, Kidman acknowledged the power of television and film to shine a light on issues like domestic violence.
“It is a complicated, insidious disease, but it exists far more than we allow ourselves to know,” said Kidman in her speech. “It is filled with shame and secrecy and by you acknowledging me with this award it shines a light on it even more, so thank you, thank you, thank you.”
For now, as the fight for gender equality rages on, Kidman hopes to inspire women and men to support and celebrate one another.
“In those moments, I like to think of those who have my back, who lifted me up and encouraged me to believe in myself,” wrote Kidman in Porter. “Imagine: If you can fall back on the 3.5 billion sisters, and the many good men who are with us, what could we possibly not achieve?”