michaelacoel

Michaela Coel dedicates Emmy to sexual abuse survivors as she makes history

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Rebecca Lewis

British star Michaela Coel has become the first Black woman ever to win the Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series award at the Emmys, and she dedicated it to survivors of sexual abuse.

Michaela, who created and starred in the Emmy-winning I May Destroy You, won her first Emmy on Sunday.

As her name was announced, she took a minute to sit with her team at the table, composing herself before she made her way to the stage.

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I May Destroy You won outstanding limited series

"Write the tale that scares you. That makes you feel uncertain. That is uncomfortable," she began.

"I dare you.

"In a world that entices us to browse through the lives of others to help us better determine how we feel about ourselves; and to in turn feel the need to be constantly visible, for visibility these days seems to somehow equate to success, do not be afraid to disappear from it, from us, for a while, and see what comes to you in the silence." She concluded: "I dedicate this story to every single survivor of sexual assault, thank you."

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The crowd gave her a standing ovation as she finished speaking.

"You just made me cry. Your show spoke to me so deeply," tweeted one emotional fan as another shared: "So richly deserved. #MichaelaCoel is a monumentally talented artist."

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Michaela was clearly emotional

I May Destroy You follows Arabella, a debut novelist, who is assaulted in a nightclub and forced to reassess everything, including her career, friends and family.

The 33-year-old was best known for her breakthrough Channel 4 comedy Chewing Gum, inspired by her play Chewing Gum Dreams; she won a BAFTA for her performance.

The multi-talented TV star has previously explained candidly that the story behind her latest project is based on her own experience: "After speaking to women and men who’d suffered similar attacks, I realised my experience was incredibly common. That made me create a show exploring the line between consent and rape."

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