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Love TV? TV women have brought us great lessons in leadership, achievement and diligence. It’s time their stories are told and in many cases, placed in the proper context of the women’s movement, social change and political trends. Representation of women on TV – whether it’s in the news, programming schedule or sports – is a fraction of the amount of screen time men get. Yet every generation of women is profoundly impacted by what they see. It’s more than the memory of watching it, it’s the confidence that if a girl or woman sees another doing it, she is more likely to believe in herself.

Advanced TV Herstory connects the dots of TV and feminism with American politics and culture. Within each episode, we zero in on the life lessons discovered through research and analysis. Shows from every era and genre, and the women who made them, get their place in the spotlight. 

Hosted and produced by Cynthia Bemis Abrams

Apr 16, 2020

Dr. Elana Levine's recently published Her Stories (Duke Univ. Press) forms the backbone of this 4-part series on soap operas. This episode includes a look at the formative pioneers of serial storytelling - Irna Phillips, Agnes Nixon and William Bell. Other topics covered who owned any given show and how that impacted business decisions and how technology changed storytelling.

Future episodes from this Levine interview discuss Super Couples of the 90s, fantasy and traumatic storylines, reproductive and feminist issues and the accelerated demise of many shows.

For more on Agnes Nixon, listen in on a 2017 podcast episode between Cynthia and Elana.  Fans of All My Children and As the World Turns, check out a 2-part interview with two-time Emmy Award Winner Cady McClain (Dixie Cooney) from March 2020.

Dr. Elana Levine is a Professor of Media, Cinema and Digital Studies in the Department of English at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.