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Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, opted for a sit-down interview with Fortune editor Ellen McGirt for a Most Powerful Women summit held recently. Meghan insisted she is “not controversial” despite coming under fire for her political involvement in the upcoming US presidential election on November 3. Meghan said rather than her being controversial, “what ends up being inflammatory is people’s interpretation”.
And throughout the interview, body language expert Judi James said the Duchess had a “slightly defensive” stance while displaying a “misunderstood tone”.
Ms James said the interview appearance was comparable to the one Meghan and Prince Harry did with ITV’s Tom Bradby in South Africa last year.
She explained: “Meghan splays out on her sofa with her shirt sleeves rolled up to suggest she wants to get down to business and, as she says, be “authentic” here.
“The splaying and pit-baring looks confident and gently powerful, as does the preen gesture with her hair.
“The very subtle lower jaw-jut and a few sharp, accelerated blinks hints at some anger, although her overall tone signals bewilderment from a woman who tells us she has not been controversial in what she says in the past.
“Meghan emphasises her emotional side again with the mention of tears and as she looks away dramatically to consider her thoughts as she speaks it is the shaking of her head that suggests a sense of bewilderment or disbelief.”
The Duchess of Sussex attended the summit virtually from her Montecito mansion in Santa Barbara, California, which she shares with Harry and their son, Archie.
Meghan said the couple are focusing into tackling hate speech and toxic behaviour on the internet.
She said that allowing misinformation and bullying on social media is “not sustainable” and is an issue that must be tackled.
Meghan and Harry have called on advertisers to boycott some social media networks, including Facebook.
She added: “If the changes that are being made are in fact made, it’s for the good of everyone, Facebook included.”
This is not the first Meghan has been outspoken on socio-political issues since stepping down from the Royal Family.
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The couple were recently criticised for their involvement in the election, in which they appeared to show their support for Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden.
Speaking from a video call in a Time 100 message, Meghan said the presidential race was “the most important election of our lifetime” as the couple urged Americans to exercise their right to vote.
Prince Harry said in the video: “This election I am not able to vote in the US, but many of you may not know that I haven’t been able to vote in the UK my entire life.
“As we approach this November it is vital we reject hate speech, misinformation and online negativity.”
Buckingham Palace distanced itself from the Duke’s comments, following a long tradition of royal family members staying out of politics.
A palace spokesperson said: “We would not comment. The Duke is not a working member of the royal family and any comments he makes are in a personal capacity.”
Managing editor of Majesty magazine Joe Little said: “You can understand Meghan getting involved as an American citizen, although she is now a member of the British Royal Family.
“But I think people will struggle a lot more with Prince Harry because as a prince of the blood it’s not seen as the done thing to talk about politics, be it British or American.
“He may be thousands miles away, but yet he is still a member of the Royal Family, the Queen’s grandson, and it’s something he wouldn’t do were he still in the UK.”
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