Legitimate gay icon Jane Krakowski says being surrounded by queer people on the set of Dickinson was an honour
Jane Krakowski is very proud of Dickinson for representing Emily’s queerness.
Bonafide gay icon Jane Krakowski plays poet Emily Dickinson’s very traditional mother in Apple TV’s Dickinson – and while her character is conservative, Krakowski is most definitely not.
She is beloved by the LGBT+ community for her camp, over-the-top performances, and she doesn’t disappoint in Dickinson. When she first got the script for the show, its exploration of Emily’s queerness – and the feminist slant on the story – helped to draw her in.
Dickinson delves into the poet’s sexuality, depicting her passionate relationship with her sister-in-law Sue – a talking point that scholars have pored over for years.
Krakowski speaks of her pride at being part of a story that has “adjusted the true story” of Emily Dickinson’s life, paving the way for her to be reclaimed as a queer icon.
“The scholars of Emily Dickinson believe in her relationship with Sue, and the sort of coming out of that relationship and the adjusting of the true story,” she says.
Krakowski also notes that LGBT+ representation is embedded into the show in more ways than one, with a number of queer people working behind the scenes to help bring Emily Dickinson to life.
“We have such a diverse LGBT+ community [behind the scenes] and I love that. I think we not only talk about it on the show, but we’re living it backstage too, and that is a wonderful world to be a part of,” she says.
Krakowski was also drawn to the show because of its depiction of Emily as a “great feminist heroine” – a part of her story that is often overlooked in other adaptations that focus on her life.
“I do feel that Emily Dickinson was a very early feminist of her time, and although she never really left home and never married per se, I think those were all very modern woman stances to take at that time. Obviously, we see that very strongly in Dickinson season one, where she is not following that path that her mother would like her to take of what traditional women and conventional women would have followed in a patriarchal society at the time.”
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Krakowski adds: “I think she is a great feminist heroine for our most modern times and of course, that’s displayed in her writing.”
Dickinson season two is streaming on Apple TV now.
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