#1543: Women And The Oscars; A Women-Only Theater Company

Feb 15, 2019

On this week’s 51%, hear from a professor about where women stand in the film industry given the Academy Award nominees; learn about Minnesota’s first women-only theater company; and a teen gives her take on dating.

The Academy Awards are February 24, and a professor at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York, says the Oscar nominations are a strong indication that the Academy and Hollywood are finally taking #MeToo and #OscarSoWhite to heart. Dr. Mia Mask is the author of “Divas on Screen: Black Women in American Film.” At Vassar she teaches African American cinema, Documentary History and seminars on special film topics. She also teaches feminist film theory, African national cinemas and genre courses. Mask has written film reviews and covered festivals for IndieWire.com, The Village Voice, Film Quarterly, Time Out New York and more. I asked what she thought of this year’s nominees and what they speak to during movements such as #MeToo. 

We’ll stay in the arts with a mini-history of Minnesota's first women-only theater company. Formed in 1976, At the Foot of Mountain Theater staged plays written by women and transformed those written by men. KFAI's Dixie Treichel reports.

BEIRUT (AP) — Lebanon's new interior minister has taken office, becoming the country's and the Arab world's first female official in charge of powerful security agencies. Raya Al Hassan took over as a part of a new government named after nearly nine months of deadlock. She is one of four women in the 30-member cabinet, a historic record for female political representation in Lebanon. She will be in charge of multiple, often competing security agencies, and of maintaining stability where until recently the country has grappled with militant groups and limited spillover from the war next door in Syria. In 2009, Al Hassan became the region's first female finance minister.

In a month where Valentine’s Day is blotted on the calendar, here’s a piece about, not necessarily love, but dating, Immigrants can often have their feet in two or more cultures. That’s the case for Philly Youth Radio’s Yingci Chen, a first generation Chinese immigrant and, at the time of this piece, a high school sophomore. She has one foot planted in U.S. culture and the other in the lessons her parents teach her. 

That story was produced by Yingci Chen and Philly Youth Radio, a project that works with local high school students to report radio stories that matter to them.

That’s our show for this week. Thanks to Patrick Garrett and Elizabeth Hill for production assistance. Our executive producer is Dr. Alan Chartock. Our theme music is Glow in the Dark by Kevin Bartlett. This show is a national production of Northeast Public Radio. If you’d like to hear this show again, sign up for our podcast, or visit the 51% archives on our web site at wamc.org. And follow us on Twitter @51PercentRadio

“Contributions to 51% #1543 come from the Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.”