Soundtrack for low-key reality and post-apocalyptic futures

Read. Watch. Listen. introduces you to the personal side of our faculty, staff and alumni. Participants are asked to answer three simple questions about their reading, viewing and listening habits – what one book or newspaper/magazine article is grabbing your attention; what one movie or television show has caught your eye; and what album/song, podcast or radio show are you lending an ear to.

Wendy Pearson is Chair of the Department of Women’s Studies and Feminist Research. She was recently named a 2019 recipient of the prestigious 3M National Teaching Fellowship, one of 10 recipients nationwide.

Today, she takes a turn on Read. Watch. Listen.

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Larissa Lai’s The Tiger Flu is described by one reviewer as a “uniquely female bio-cyberpunk thriller.” Set in 2145, the novel follows two young women struggling to survive and make sense of the post-apocalyptic world in which they live; the dearest wish of both girls is to reunite their families. While Kora Ko’s society includes men, most of whom are afflicted with the tiger flu, Kirilow Groundsel’s people are an all-female society who reproduce by cloning – something which, along with the setting, links this novel to Lai’s earlier cyberpunkish work, The Salt Fish Girl.


Recently, I’ve been watching The Big Family Cooking Showdown. I’m not generally a fan of reality TV, but British shows often seem to eschew the emotional drama and nastiness. What I love about TBFCS, apart from the amazing variety of dishes the families make, is that so many of the contestants end up as friends. I like how low key it is.


I’ve been listening to Bronski Beat and the Communards, two 1980s British queer bands. I’m particularly fond of Jimmy Somerville’s elegy for Mark Ashton (founder of Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners), For a Friend.

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If you have a suggestion for someone you would like to see in Read. Watch. Listen., or would like to participate yourself, drop a line to