This documentary chronicles how hundreds of French sex workers went on strike in 1975 and occupied five Catholic churches to protest against police abuse and government closure of their workplace. Forty years on, Australian producer, academic and sex worker rights researcher Eurydice Aroney revisits the Lyon cathedral occupied by the women with the full blessing of its cleric, Père Blanc, now ninety years old. Interviews with Blanc and some of the original sex worker protesters are interwoven with archival material to make a compelling audio story, selected as a finalist for the UK In The Dark award (2015).
This work has had several incarnations: the original 50-minute French documentary heard on Radio France Culture and Radio Belgium; the French documentary watched with English subtitles provided by the In the Dark organisation; and a shorter (27mins) remixed English version, heard on ABC RN’s Earshot. To address these complexities, RadioDoc Review asked former CBC broadcasters Sean Prpick and Maud Beaulieu to review the work from different perspectives: Prprick, as an English-speaking producer, listened to the subtitled French and the English versions; Beaulieu, who is bilingual, evaluated the original French version using guidelines devised by the RDR Editorial Board. Finally, RDR Editor interviews producer Eurydice Aroney about the complexities of making a crosscultural work on a politically delicate theme and its standing as an academic research publication, known as a Non-Traditional Research Output (NTRO).