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Pose director Janet Mock graces the cover of British Vogue for historic September issue

Vic Parsons August 4, 2020
Janet Mock graces the cover of British Vogue for historic September issue

Janet Mock on British Vogue's September 2020 cover. (Instagram/janetmock)

British Vogue’s latest issue celebrates activists from around the world – including Pose director and general icon, Janet Mock.

The bestselling author, TV host and Emmy award-winning director is one of 20 activists to be platformed in the much-anticipated issue – the most important of the year.

September’s British Vogue cover usually features celebrities and a wide-ranging look at the changing fashion season. But this year, editor-in-chief Edward Enninful has dedicated the issue to changemakers.

“This year has often seemed like a dark time for humanity,” Enninful wrote in his editor’s letter, “but it has also marked itself as a golden era for activism.”

 

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With global protests against racism and police brutality being hailed as the biggest civil rights movement of a generation, and with a rejuvenation of Black Lives Matter, British Vogue has chosen a crucial moment to platform those leading the global uprising against white supremacist power structures.

British writer and broadcaster Afua Hirsch, writing the accompanying feature for the magazine, said that this is the time when words and protests need to evolve into actions and change.

“As Martin Luther King Jr once said, ‘this sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality’,” she wrote.

“We had our sweltering summer of legitimate discontent. The autumn starts now.”

Footballer and child poverty campaigner Marcus Rashford and model and activist Adwoa Aboah lead the front cover of the landmark issue, with Mock and dozens of other activists tucked into a fold-out.

Janet Mock has repeatedly made trans history.

Janet Mock is the second trans woman to cover British Vogue, following Laverne Cox on last year’s “Force for Change” September issue.

In 2018 Mock became the first trans woman of colour in history to be hired as a writer for a television series when she started working on Pose.

She made history again in 2019 when she wrote and directed an episode of Pose, making her the first trans woman of colour to write and direct any television episode.

Her debut memoir, Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More was published in February 2014, and went straight to the top of the New York Times bestseller list in its first week.

Janet Mock has since been open about the “racism, sexism and transphobia” that has hindered her career as a Black trans woman – many bookshops still don’t stock Redefining Realness.

 

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More: afua hirsch, black lives matter, black trans lives matter, british vogue, edward enninful, Janet Mock, Redefining Realness

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