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Welcome to Advanced TV Herstory, the podcast that connects the dots of TV & feminism and American politics & culture. We tell the stories of women in TV who have had a profound impact on the confidence and aspirations of generations of girls and women.

We highlight the pioneering journalists, talented actresses, and gutsy writers who challenged societal norms and provide historical context for their achievements within the cultural and political trends of the time. By exploring the past, we ensure that the struggles, triumphs, and milestones of these women are not lost to history.

Hosted and produced by television scholar Cynthia Bemis Abrams, Advanced TV Herstory is more than just a podcast. It is a research-based examination of the evolution of television and women in our society. Each episode is an opportunity to inspire listeners to believe in themselves, challenge norms, break barriers, and shape the future of television and our world.

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Feb 15, 2023

On this episode of Advanced TV Herstory, we connect the dots between TV and feminism with American culture and politics by remembering the 1979 television miniseries, Backstairs at the White House.

The series is based on the New York Times bestseller by Lillian Rogers Parks, a seamstress in the White House from 1939-1961. Parks based the book on her own experiences and on those of her mother, Maggie Rogers, who, as a maid in the White House from 1909-1939, was encouraged by Eleanor Roosevelt to keep a diary of her time serving the various first families.   

(We encourage you to visit your local bookseller or library.)

Jackie Kennedy - Interview with Sander Vanocur, NBC - March 1961 -

My Thirty Years Backstairs at the White House - by Lillian Rogers Parks in collaboration with Frances Spatz Leighton -

Michelle Obama - Speech at 2016 Democratic National Convention -

White House Historical Association -


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