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Movies, TV, History, Culture, Music, Books: What they say about women and what women say about them. Written and hosted by two college professors.

Movies, TV, History, Culture, Music, Books: What they say about women and what women say about them. Written and hosted by two college professors.
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Movies, TV, History, Culture, Music, Books: What they say about women and what women say about them. Written and hosted by two college professors.






Ep 16: The Trouble With Tropes

What’s a “woman in a refrigerator”? Are you more complex than an Old Maid or Bridezilla? Nagging wife or desperate for a husband? We’ll discuss what tropes are, and what tropes storytellers use in their depictions of women. How do these tropes undermine or over-simplify women’s complex ranges of emotions, ideas, and personalities? How do tropes affect our own biases, and why does this matter? With lots of examples from TV and movies, we get into crazy women, old maids, wedding-obsessed...


Ep 15 Math Class

We’re taking you to math class, as best as we can, to talk about math education for women, and some of our favorite female mathematicians and math experts. From women in the 1800s who fought to go to college or invented computer programming, to women still alive with mathematical achievements that helped defeat Nazis and move us all forward. This episode includes discussion of 4 awesome women, featuring a guest spot from our friends in the STEM Fatale podcast: Ada Lovelace, who understood...


Ep 14: Dudes + Feminism (Featuring a Profess-Him)

Do men need feminism? Does feminism need men? Is toxic masculinity real? The answer to all of these questions is a very emphatic yes, and in this episode, we discuss examples from TV, academic research, and our own lives that can attest to that. While this episode includes discussions about serious stuff that we take seriously, we have lots of fun (and so many laughs) with our guest, a real-live dude professor who shares his perspectives and experiences. We discuss the Big Bang Theory,...


Ep 13: Villainy, Crimes, and Musicals

Female criminals, anti-heroes and villains in history, literature and TV. Why are female criminals oddly fascinating? How has their depiction changed over time, and what does their depiction tell us about ourselves? What’s up with playground chants about murder? Why do we need more female anti-heroes on TV? We discuss some famous felonious women, and some lesser known lady criminals of history - including an exploration of the continued (and possibly sexist) depictions of Lizzie Borden,...


Episode 12: Lady Detectives on TV

From Charlie’s Angels to Brooklyn 99, how have female detectives and crime solvers been depicted on TV? We discuss some notable TV detectives from Honey West to Jessica Fletcher, talk about how shows like Law and Order made progress in representation, and get into CSI and other shows that (thankfully) start to show more complex female characters. This episode also includes discussions about The Closer, Veronica Mars, Major Crimes, and some new shows this season that have us feeling...


Episode 11: Lady Detectives in History and Literature

Women solving crimes, preventing assassinations, gossiping to find killers, and breaking into archetypes and police forces. Who are the notable female sleuths from literature, and how does their development reflect the changing nature of police departments? How does Agatha Christie’s most famous lady detective fit an archetype, but break the mold? What happened to the first generation of women who grew up reading Nancy Drew? We start in the 1840s with literary traditions and the creation...


Episode 10: Modern Holiday

All we want for Christmas is non-oppressive media representation. In our second holiday special, we get into seasonal sexism, Hallmark and Lifetime holiday movies, Elf on the Shelf, Dolly Parton, diamond rings, and non-problematic Christmas and holiday jams. Remembering that the personal is political, we discuss some of our holiday memories and how women balance extra expectations around the holiday season. Remembering that we support each other’s choices, we discuss representation and...


Episode 9: Classic Christmas (Or, How English Teachers Ruin Everything)

Baby, it's cold out there for a feminist. In our first of two Christmas specials, we get into Little Women, and three classic “Christmas” carols. We're sure you're already familiar with how English teachers ruin stuff, but do y'all know how surprisingly rad Louisa May Alcott was? This episode has everything: Literature and literary analysis, book-to-film adaptations, songs, jokes, history, women's movements, and what we want for Christmas! Find out what Misty's historical final take on...


Episode 8: Women In Sports: Play Like a Person and Look However You Want

Play like a man but look like a girl? We are going to hard pass on both. Make-up, hair-dos, playing in dresses (or worse), having chaperones and going to charm schools: Playing professional sports seems to come with some serious restrictions for women. We talk about women playing professional sports in the US: the woman who was too good for Babe Ruth’s liking, the All-American Girls’ Professional Baseball League, women who play football the only way they can, what hasn’t changed since the...


Episode 7: Pop Charts, Not Pop-Tarts 2 (Women of Music Part 2)

Rebel girls, girl power, lady rock stars, Lilith Fair, and shaking off scrubs. In our second music episode, we rock out with some of the greatest women of music from the 1980s and the 1990s. Listen as Madonna, Cyndi Lauper embrace their personal power, and Joan Jett and the Go-Go’s make space for female-led bands. In the 90s, we get alternative, and discuss songs that speak to what it was like to be a girl - or man, to feel like a woman. Which songs speak to us about the complexity of...


Episode 6: Pop Charts, Not Pop Tarts 1 (Women of Music Part 1)

What counts as a lady anthem? In this episode, we discuss (and listen to!) girl groups, Janis Joplin, queens of disco, and some of the original divas. In our first music episode, we jam out with some of the greatest women of music from the 1960s and the 1970s. Listen as women go from crying over a man to singing “hear me roar,” and from waiting on “Mr. Postman” to singing odes to “The Pill.” Which girls groups staged a protest to get their royalties? How does the history of female...


Episode 5: Lifestyle Leading Ladies

Was Julia Child a very tall spy?* In this episode, we share stories about our favorite lifestyle TV leading ladies. Misty schools us on just how hardcore Julia Child was, Allegra may change your mind about how important and inspiring Martha Stewart is, and we take turns celebrating Oprah. How did these three follow their interests and passions into high-profile careers? How have they used their power and influence to be of use to other women (and to give them free cars)? Are Martha and...


Episode 4: Women of TV Through Time

How did we get from June Cleaver to SVU? What does Friends get right in its representation of women, gender roles and sexuality, and which scenes make us cringe? Why hasn't Mariska Hargitay won every Emmy ever? We’re going to dig into some of the golden girls of TV in every decade - from the 1950s through the present. We highlight landmark shows from every era and discuss their representations of women and how they reflect social progress. Misty takes us through the history of consensus...


Episode 3: The Haunting Prose of Female Authors

Monsters, Hitchcock, psychological horror, hauntings, cults, vampires or the hunt for a killer: female authors are killing it in horror and suspense writing. Expect many ghastly puns and lots of literary criticism in this episode, our second Halloween special, about women writers who can really scare us: featuring Mary Shelley, Charlotte Perkins Gillman, Shirley Jackson, Joyce Carol Oates, Gillian Flynn, Tana French and many others. What kinds of achievements are female authors making in...


Episode 2: Scream and Other Queens

What's your favorite scary movie? In this episode, Misty and Allegra talk about the representation of women in horror movies. Are there movies that have accurate, fair or progressive representations of women? How do horror movies mirror the progress of women’s movements? We’ll also talk about common problems of female representations, films that get it right (or at least get it a little right-er) and the difference between final girls, scream queens, and damsels in distress. We also discuss...


Episode 1: As Tough As The Times

Spice Girls feminism or Twitter feminsim? To Kill A Mockingbird or Carrie? In this first episode, Misty and Allegra introduce themselves, their podcast, and the history of that dirty "F" word... Go through a quick (and funny) history of feminism, which includes notable acheivements by the women's movements, and literature that reflects the social progress. Profess-Hers is a podcast written and presented by Misty, a History professor, and Allegra an English professor, both of whom are here...