Wednesday 18 January 2017

Margolyes on Women’s Hour

I heard Miriam Margolyes on Woman’s hour this morning. She appeared as a guest on one of those ‘chain’ interviews, where one speaker links to another (like a chain.)

I’m just a little uncomfortable with her constant need to push too much information at us, (“This is Radio 4!” warned a wary Jenni Murray) but I can sort of understand why she feels compelled to recount detailed toilet related and sexual anecdotes. It’s almost defensive. Or preemptive.

I can also understand why a Jewish, only-child of an overbearing mother and an unassertive father, who describes herself as “fat and a show-off” might have been attracted and flattered at being accepted by a large academic, strongly Arabist family, that of her university friend Elizabeth Hodgkin. 
If I am right in assuming this was the opposite of her own family, it all sounds slightly self-hating and self-denying, but I’m sure the therapist and his fat, show-offy, provocatively lavatorially-mouthed, lesbian, thespian client would have explored all that in depth.

You’d think having a distinctive, honey-toned voice with the precise and cultured enunciation of a kind one rarely gets to hear nowadays would be enough of a professional asset for anyone without having to test how many insinuations and rude utterances she can get away with.

Whenever you hear Miriam Margoyles speaking about herself  (My autocorrect, rather aptly, keeps changing the ‘M’ to a ‘G’) you’re always waiting to see how long till she mentions Israel. 
She duly did so at the end of her interview - introducing the aforementioned university friend, her choice for the upcoming link in the chain, saying proudly that this family and this friendship showed her how to be “Not a Zionist” and citing the Tonge-like phrase “the way the Israelis treat the Palestinians”. 

I don’t think she has given much thought to the way the Palestinians treat the Israelis, not to mention what they would do with them if only they could.

I happen to know some academic, aristocratic and (temporarily) military Arabists who had spent time hobnobbing with “Johnny Arab” in the old days. I must say I was alarmed at their tendency to laugh affectionately at the superstitious, volatile and unpredictable nature of some of the gun-toting characters they encountered back then in some Godforsaken area of the Maghreb.

Although Miriam’s friend’s family may not be anything like that, I would imagine that they would know enough to advise Miriam that the Palestinians they’re so fond of might not approve of the homosexuality she talks so incontinently and openly about. 


  1. Margoyles has the arrogant habit of trying to get a reaction out of people so she can act superior. I watched last year's "The Real Hotel Magnolia" (which was actually pretty enjoyable), and she would make remarks about bodily functions and google her eyes at the camera and smirk as if she was proud to have shocked the viewer. Every time, same thing. Children giggle and squirm over toilet humor and bodily functions, but I find them too mundane to get embarrassed about. She also liked to claim a moral high ground, as if she were special. I've seen her do this in interviews in the past as well. All the other celebs were much less arrogant. At least she admits she's a show-off. The insecurity is strong with this one.

    This anti-Israel pose is typical of her luvviedom.

  2. Had she shared Carol Thatcher's misfortune of having Margaret Thatcher as her mother, her comments on Black people would have been enough to ensure we never had to endure her presence on our screens again. However, she didn't and she ticks too many other boxes to warrant a BBC ban.

  3. I’m not one of those avid male listeners that the presenters of Woman’s hour like to refer to, but is broadcast at that time of day when my radio is on in the background, so to speak. I did catch the interview with Miriam Gargoyles. I am afraid my reaction was, “Oh well, more of the same”. However, I do look forward to hearing the shocked reaction of Jane Garvey or Jenni Murray to that brave guest who admits to being a Zionist - much more shocking than Margoyles’s lavatory humour, but unfortunately not likely to happen.
    I may be repeating myself in saying this, but Margoyles and her Arabist friends (and for that matter the BBC) are reminiscent of those idiots on the British left who refused to see the evils of Stalinism.

  4. I wonder what it was about the detailed toilet related and sexual anecdotes that first attracted the BBC to her?

    Those, and the attempt to unseat Mishal from her perch.

  5. One of those 'chain' interviews:

    "Tell me, you are one of us, the luvvy bubble, is there anyone else that you would like to nominate to represent our views to the plebs?"


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