Podcast

You can listen and subscribe to our women’s history podcast at Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, RadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Deezer, and A Cast. If you like what you hear, consider leaving us a review!

  • Podcast 57: Angela Carter (11/16/2022)

    To kick off Season 6 of our podcast, writer Leon Craig brings us the story of award-winning English author Angela Carter. Known for her feminist, gothic, and erotic sensibilities and for re-inventing folk and fairy tales with her now seminal collection The Bloody Chamber, Carter’s life had quite a few plot twists of its own. In her 51 years she wrote nine novels, five short story collections, several children’s books, and countless essays and articles. She also collected quite a few lovers after awakening from a stifling marriage, harvesting them first from her social circle and friends’ husbands, then later more randomly during her two years living in Japan. Shortly after her death from cancer, Angela Carter received a strong wave of recognition, and her writing is now taught to generations of British school kids.

    Our presenter Leon Craig has received more than a few comparisons to Carter for her own debut story collection, Parallel Hells, which is now out in paperback from Sceptre Books. At the White Review, you can read that collection’s “Lick the Dust,” which was selected for Best British Short Stories 2022 . Leon can be found at www.leoncraigwriter.com and on Twitter @Leon_c_c.

    This episode, DLS co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins producer/host Susan Stone to introduce the episode and talk more about writers Carter and Craig.

    Also available on SpotifyApple PodcastsRadioPublicPocket CastsStitcherGoogle Podcasts, and Acast. You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.

    Show notes:



    Angela Carter, from the Fay Godwin Archive at the British Library

    “‘A free woman in an unfree society will be a monster. Her freedom will be a condition of personal privilege that deprives those on which she exercises it of her own freedom. The most extreme kind of this deprivation is murder. These women murder.” from Angela Carter’s iconic collection of essays

    The Crescent where Angela was bored in Brighton.

    Angelas favorite pub in Bristol: the Greyhound

    Angela after returning from Japan in 1972

    Angela around the time she met Mark

    The terrifying poster for Neil Jordan’s film that was banned from the London Tube

    Angela in her study towards the end of her life

    Leon recommends The Invention of Angela Carter: A Biography by Edmund Gordon, “On Angela Carter” by Susannah Clapp at the London Review of Books, A Card From Angela Carter by Susannah Clapp, and “Death of the Author” by Lorna Sage, Granta. Angela Carter’s estate has a great website and is on Twitter @AngelaOCarter.

    ****

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon https://freemusicarchive.org/music/Tri-Tachyon/the-kleptotonic-ep/little-lily-swing

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

  • Podcast 56: Mae West (8/17/2022)

    Courtesy of our pals at DLS NYC, we meet the first meta sex symbol: Mae West. Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, Mae was brazen, buxom, bawdy, sensational, and sexy. She was known for her husky voice, risqué performances, and double entendres that slipped past the film censors. With over 70 years in show business on both stage and screen, she scandalized the world of entertainment in a time when women were expected to sit on the sidelines. But, as Mae West would tell you, “goodness had nothing to do with it.”

    DLS co-founder Florian Duijsens joins producer Susan Stone to introduce our featured Dead Lady.

    Artist, lecturer, researcher, and self-described ‘professional eccentric’ JR Pepper tells Mae’s story; you can find out more about JR here.

    DLS NYC is curated and hosted by Molly O’Laughlin Kemper, and was recorded by Jennifer Nulsen, all under the auspices of the KGB Bar’s Lori Schwarz.

    If you’re in the NY area, why not sign up for their newsletter so you can find out when the next show will be? Find it here.

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.

    Show notes:



    A more modest Mae in 1912

    Mae’s breakthrough was”Ev’rybody Shimmies Now,” 1918.

    Mae wrote, produced, directed, and starred in this scandalous hit Broadway play – which landed her in jail!

    Her pioneering show The Drag was possibly even more scandalous.

    Mae at the height of her Broadway success/scandal, 1927

    In 1933, she took Diamond Lil to Hollywood, becoming one of the highest-paid actors.

    Mae’s iconic walk was also made possible by specially designed platform shoes.

    Mae West’s full interview with Dick Cavett

    Mae West and Mae West-inspired characters showed up across American pop culture, like in this Silly Symphony!

     Salvador Dali’s Mae West’s  Face which May Be Used as a Surrealist Apartment, 1933-1934

    An official Mae West life preserver!

    1966

    A kind soul compiled this set of Mae’s most enduring zingers.

    In 1955, Mae was still tabloid fodder.

    Mae still her imperiously sexy self in 1973

    1978’s Sextette really gives you all the Owwws.

    Mae has been an inspiration to drag queens since she was first inspired by “female impersonators” herself.

    In 2020, PBS ran this rapturous documentary about Mae, starring many talking heads.

    And if you want to hear it straight from Mae herself, come up and read her autobiography sometime, owww…

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

  • Podcast 55: Virginia Andrews (7/23/2022)

    This episode was recorded at the second-ever PodFest Berlin, a local two-day event full of workshops, networking, free ice cream, and live tapings from podcasts in various languages, including one from us. 

    Dead Ladies Show co-founder Katy Derbyshire and podcast producer/host Susan Stone were there for a mini DLS, and took turns hosting and presenting bilingually in German and English in front of a small but perfectly formed audience. 

    In this episode, we hear Susan tell the story of Virginia Andrews. Better known as V.C. Andrews, this blockbusting American author probably launched the sexual curiosities of generations of teens and pre-teens — for better or worse. Her psychological horror/romance books, starting with 1979’s bestselling Flowers in the Attic, were banned in school districts and libraries, but earned millions internationally. The tale of children held captive by an evil grandmother was sadly somewhat mirrored in Virginia’s own reclusive, highly controlled life. 

    Though she was disabled by a medical condition from her teen years on, Virginia supported her family through her artwork and writing. After her death, a prolific ghostwriter was appointed to continue books under her name, but her legacy really endures on the strength of her original seven bestsellers, which merged classic fairy tale themes with contemporary issues of trauma and abuse.  

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    You can download the transcript, created by Susan Stone, here.

    Show notes:



    Virginia with her red typewriter

    Enjoying success

    Not enjoying press attention

    The lost sci-fi

    Susan’s not sure she can recommend ghost writer Andrew Neiderman’s biography (above), but the cover is pretty great.

    If you’d like to watch some footage, there’s this TV interview with V.C. Andrews

    Or how about a trailer for the 1987 Flowers in the Attic adaptation: 

    The 2014 version:

    And the newest series running now:

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in August.

    ****

    The Dead Ladies Show is a series of entertaining and inspiring talks about women who achieved amazing things against all odds, presented live in Berlin and beyond. This podcast is based on that series. Because women’s history is everyone’s history.

    The Dead Ladies Show was founded by Florian Duijsens and Katy Derbyshire.

    The podcast is created, produced, edited, and presented by Susan Stone.

    Don’t forget, we have a Patreon! Thanks to all of our current supporters! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast 54: Memphis Minnie (6/16/2022)

    In this Episode, we drop in on our New York-based sister spinoff show, DLS NYC, which returned to the KGB Bar’s Red Room after a long hiatus. DLS co-founder Florian Duijsens happened to be visiting from Berlin, and took to the stage to introduce the fabulous Memphis Minnie. 

    Tobacco-chewing blues singer MEMPHIS MINNIE (1897–1973) ran away from home at the age of 13 and made a living off music from then on, from street performances supplemented by prostitution to hundreds of now classic recordings. It was said she never put her guitar down until she could no longer hold it in her hands, and she was known to use it as a weapon when required. Her songs were about the joys and hardships of everyday black life; according to the poet Langston Hughes, she played “music with so much in it folks remember, that sometimes it makes them holler out loud.” Largely forgotten for many years while white men covered her songs, she is now celebrated for her huge contribution to blues music and what came after. 


    Embed from Getty Images

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.

    Show notes:



    A short video about the sampling history of Led Zeppelin’s cover of Kansas Joe & Memphis Minnie’s “When the Levee Breaks”

    Here’s Minnie on lead guitar, recorded at their very first recording session, June of 1929

    Minnie singing about her wild youth

    Written by Kansas Joe, this song was “popularized” by Peggy Lee in 1942, but recorded by Lil Green in 1941

    Memphis Minnie started releasing edgier music

    Minnie’s smile sparkled, also note the dice ring Langston Hughes mentions!

    Minnie’s prized electric guitar

    Minnie on divorce: “I decided I wasn’t married no more”

    Minnie’s biggest success (and an instant winner at countless blues battles)

    “I got so many chickens, can’t tell my roosters from my hens.”

    Read more about Chicago’s gay scene at Windy City Times, and you can read Langston Hughes’ entire review on Memphis Minnie’s show here.

    A short profile of Tiny Davis of the International Sweethearts of Rhythm (and lesbian bar Tiny and Ruby’s Gay Spot)

    Also enjoy their classic “Diggin’ Dykes

    Minnie’s gravestone in Walls, MS, paid for by Bonnie Raitt

    Check out the silver-dollar bracelet!

    Memphis Minnie recorded 10 different takes of this song, each with different guitar solos and ad libs, but we like Take 7 best.

    These videos are a great way to get into Memphis Minnie, and Florian has also made a special playlist on Spotify, but If you want to know more about Memphis Minnie, read Woman with Guitar: Memphis Minnie’s Blues by Paul & Beth Garon, first published just after her death, and expanded in 2014.

    DLS NYC is curated and hosted by Molly O’Laughlin Kemper, and was recorded by Jennifer Nulsen, all under the auspices of the KGB Bar’s Lori Schwarz. 

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

  • Podcast #53: Eva Crane (5/12/2022)

    In this buzz-worthy episode, DLS co-founder Katy Derbyshire (and translator) brings us the story of leading bee scientist Eva Crane. Born to humble beginnings, Eva obtained a PhD in nuclear physics but quickly shifted her attention from atoms to apiculture. She travelled the world to document all things bees, and was particularly interested in the relationship between bees and humans, including the long history of human honey cultivation.

    Amateur bee enthusiast (and producer/host) Susan Stone is joined by other DLS co-founder Florian Duijsens for the introducing honors.

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.

    Show notes:

    Read more: Podcast #53: Eva Crane

    The Crane family vehicle, with Eva chilling in the back

    Eva smiling mischievously at the front right

    A shiny Morris 8

    Apicultural delights from the 1940s (for Susan and all other bee enthusiasts)

    Eva’s HQ in Hull, note the blue plaque!

    Bee World! Find more on this publication’s history at IBRA’s website

    Eva in a special Georgian beekeeping hat! Check out many more pictures of here travels at the Eva Crane Trust.

    The Crane sisters (in the middle) dressed to the nines

    Eva, aged 74, casually abseiling for science

    Katy recommends these two books if you want to learn more about Eva Crane: Eva Crane: Bee Scientist, edited by her colleagues, Penelope Walker and Richard Jones, and of course, Crane’s own Making a Bee-line. The Eva Crane Trust’s site is also indispensable for information about Crane and bees.

    As promised, here’s one of Susan’s videos of some Bee-rliner bees.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon. Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

  • Podcast #52: Katherine Mansfield (4/13/2022)

    In this episode we’ll be hearing from the multi-talented Hinemoana Baker. Hinemoana hails from New Zealand, she is a writer and musician of Māori and Pākehā heritage; here, she presents her reflections on the life of another New Zealand writer — Katherine Mansfield. Mansfield was a very influential modernist writer, who left New Zealand for Europe at the age of 19, and hung out with Virginia Woolf, D.H. Lawrence, and the Bloomsbury Group gang, including her “wife,” writer Ida Baker. Mansfield is called by some the Godmother of the Short Story in the English language, and she wrote a great many in her tragically short life. 

    DLS co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins producer/host Susan Stone to introduce an episode full of personal reflections, music, and poetry.  

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.



    Show notes:

    Katherine Mansfield: Born in a Storm

    Young Katherine (4th from right) with her family (then Kathleen Beauchamp)

    Dorothy Brett, Katherine Mansfield, Ida Baker

    Maata Mahupuku, Ngāti Kahungunu

    Katherine Mansfield’s gravestone reads:

    BUT I TELL YOU, MY LORD FOOL,
    OUT OF THIS NETTLE DANGER
    WE PLUCK THIS FLOWER,
    SAFETY

    You can read many of her short stories at the website of the Katherine Mansfield Society. Hinemoana recommends “Bliss” and Susan Stone recommends both “How Pearl Button Was Kidnapped” and “A Dill Pickle”.

    Learn more about the Mansfield album, setting twelve of her poems to music.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

  • Podcast #51: Rosa Luxemburg (3/8/2022)

    The world is a troubling place, but we hope you can still find some inspiration out there, and in honor of International Women’s Day, we wanted to bring you the story of a woman who fought, loved, and sacrificed, in troubling times of her own — the revolutionary Rosa Luxemburg. Rosa was a Polish-born Jewish intellectual, socialist, Marxist philosopher, and anti-war activist, whose evocative writing contributed to her legacy. 

    Her story comes via educator and writer Agata Lisiak, who is currently working on a book about Rosa Luxemburg. 

    DLS co-founder Florian Duijsens joins producer Susan Stone to introduce our featured Dead Lady, and to give a book recommendation guaranteed to lighten up our dark times. 

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.



    Show notes:

    Here’s Rosa wearing some different hats.

    And as a young girl in Poland

    Rosa in Berlin

    With her dear friend Clara Zetkin, credited with inventing International Women’s Day

    Rosa on a couple of manels…

    …and holding her own on stage

    Rosa’s simple gravestone

    A selection of monuments

    Further reading

    Agata recommends Kate Evans’ Red Rosa, Jacqueline Rose’s Women in Dark Times, and the epic biography by J.P. Nettl.

    If you want to read her own writing, much of it is available online in the Rosa Luxemburg Library.

    The Rosa Luxemburg Foundation has a useful dossier on its name-giver, alongside its wider political work.

    And let’s finish off with a trailer for Margaretha von Trotta’s film Rosa Luxemburg.

    We couldn’t find one with subtitles, sorry!

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

    ****

    The Dead Ladies Show is a series of entertaining and inspiring talks about women who achieved amazing things against all odds, presented live in Berlin and beyond. This podcast is based on that series. Because women’s history is everyone’s history.

    The Dead Ladies Show was founded by Florian Duijsens and Katy Derbyshire.

    The podcast is created, produced, edited, and presented by Susan Stone.

    Don’t forget, we have a Patreon! Thanks to all of our current supporters! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #50: Adelaide Herrmann (2/18/2022)

    In this episode, DLS co-founder Katy Derbyshire conjures up a Victorian-era Dead Lady magician who dazzled audiences and broke boundaries. Starting from her childhood in England, Adelaide Herrmann (née Scarcez) was a born performer, first notable for dance, acrobatics, and trick cycling. She met and married magician Alexander Herrmann, and became his on-stage assistant and the star of many of his illusions, first dressed as his double and later in many guises. Following his death, she eventually took over the act, becoming the Queen of Magic, and collecting a menagerie of animals for her show. Highly successful, she toured for 25 years, performing up to the age of 74. She was buried next to her husband. His headstone reads: HERRMANN THE GREAT. Adelaide’s states more simply, WIFE.    

    DLS co-founder Florian Duijsens joins producer Susan Stone for the introducing duties.

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.



    Show notes:

    Here’s a very young Adelaide…

    …in a grainy newspaper photo, showing off her cycling bloomers.

    Some shots of her as her husband’s assistant

    And some posters from the two stages of her magical career

    Never marry a man with his own face on his cheques…

    …even if they’re issued by the Bank of Garfield.

    That confident stance in later life

    Oh, there’s only one billiard ball in each hand!

    And a fine stage outfit that has survived

    With assistant Milton Hudson Everett

    And that gravestone, in case you were wondering:

    If you’d like to do some reading, we recommend…

    Two books for young readers that feature Adelaide: 100 Immigrant Women who Changed the World in the Rebel Girls series, and Anything but Ordinary Addie. We’re especially grateful to the magician, magic historian and author Margaret Steele for finding and publishing Adelaide’s memoir with lots of fascinating accompanying material: Adelaide Herrmann, Queen of Magic. Steele has also written a blog, The Addie Chronicles, which is well worth checking out. Plus, it looks like we’re not the only ones fascinated by the Herrmanns’ assistants: Steele has a book coming out soon all about “the Boomskys”, which you can read a preview from here.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

    This episode of the Dead Ladies Show Podcast was created as part of the Droste Festival 2021 – Dark Magic by Burg Hülshoff – Center for Literature.

    Funding came from the NEUSTART KULTUR of the German Federal Commissioner for Culture and Media through the German Literature Fund and the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia.

  • Podcast #49: Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (1/19/2022)

    We kick off 2022 with an episode devoted to a woman famed for her wit and beauty, and later for her status as a sort of early inoculation influencer. Her tale is told by DLS co-founder and devoted traveler, Florian Duijsens.

    English aristocrat Lady Mary Wortley Montagu was raised to keep her opinions to herself, be it at home or in the King’s court, but she travelled widely, published secretly, and convinced many to take important steps that saved lives. When her husband became the British ambassador to the Ottoman Empire in 1716, she accompanied him to Constantinople. Gaining access to female spaces in Turkey, she witnessed smallpox inoculations there and had her son immunized in the same way, using a small sample of the live virus that had killed her brother and caused severe scarring to her own face. The principle was adapted into what we now know as vaccination. Lady Mary later left her husband behind in England after falling for an Italian count, only returning after she was widowed. She wrote poetry, essays, and copious letters, many of which were published after her death, encouraging other ladies to travel as she had done.

    DLS other co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins producer Susan Stone to introduce the featured Dead Lady. 

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.



    Show notes:

    From Mary’s Constantinople diaries

    Mary with her terrible son Edward, in Constantinople

    Some comfy Turkish fashions

    Mocking Alexander Pope (artist’s impression)

    Plain in dress and sober in diet?

    Mary’s plans for her Italian kitchen garden

    Would you call this a ‘sack dress’?

    If you’d like to read some of Mary’s writing, Florian recommends the short version, Life on the Golden Horn, or the longer Selected Letters.

    As to biographies, there’s Isobel Grundy’s 703-page belter subtitled Comet of the Enlightenment, or you could go for Jo Willett’s considerably shorter The Pioneering Life of Mary Wortley Montagu.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.
    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

  • Dead Ladies Show Deutsch: La Malinche Bonus-Episode (12/20/2021)

    Mal was anderes: ab und zu produzieren wir außerhalb der Reihe eine deutschsprachige Podcastepisode! Diesmal erzählen Aurélie Maurin und Michael Ebmeyer anlässlich des Translationale-Festivals von einer ehemaligen Übersetzerin, die sagenumwobene La Malinche. Immer noch eine machtvolle Ikone in Mexiko, La Malinche war die versklavte Dolmetscherin zwischen dem spanischen Konquistador Hernán Cortés und den Menschen, die er zu unterwerfen suchte.

    Der Vortrag basiert auf einer Performance von Aurélie Maurin und Maria Hummitzsch.



    Malinche mit ihrer Zunge, Cortés mit Flammendrachen

    Malinche bei der Dolmetscharbeit, mit Moctezuma II. kommunizierend

    Hier fand vieles statt

    Der Name Malinalli in der Bilderschrift der Azteken

    Malinche als Projektionsfläche

    Noch eine spätere Abbildung, mit Cortés, Tieren und ihrem gemeinsamen Sohn Martín

    So… sah sie bestimmt nicht aus.

    Wer noch mehr hören möchte: Das Buch Malinche – Die andere Geschichte der Eroberung Mexikos von Anna Lanyon kann man als Hörbuch ausleihen. Fast sieben Stunden Info! Und Lhasa de Selas Version von La Llorona findet man hier.

    Diese Episode des Dead Ladies Show Podcasts wird unterstützt vom Neustart Kultur-Programm und seinem Translationale Festival. Unsere Musik ist “Little Lily Swing” von Tritachyon.

  • Podcast #48: Zaha Hadid (12/15/2021)

    In our last episode of 2021, The DLS team of Susan Stone, Katy Derbyshire, and Florian Duijsens all come together to clink glasses of bubbly, and discuss our favorite Dead Lady news of the year.

    Plus, DLS Producer and journalist Susan Stone presents our featured Dead Lady, architect Zaha Hadid.  Born in Baghdad, Zaha started her creative life early, designing her own clothes and furniture at the age of 7 or 8.  She studied at, then taught at, the Architectural Association School in London, where she honed her boundary-breaking skills and unmatchable style.

    Both life and her designs threw a series of curves her way, but she excelled and inspired, becoming the first woman to with the Pritzker Architecture Prize, considered the Nobel Prize for architecture, as well as many more accolades and contracts, eventually designing everything from schools to shoes. Along the way she faced notable sexism and racism as one of few women and Arabs in the field. But she wowed critics, and created some of the most incredible buildings the world has ever seen before her death at the age of 65 in 2016.

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.

    Show notes:



    Zaha looking fab

    Zaha with Ron Arad in the hectic 1970s

    Richard Gere, natch

    Zaha’s gravity-defying design for The Peak, Hong Kong, 1982-83

    Patrik Schumacher aka Potato aka Fluffy aka Cappucino

    Vitra Fire Station, Weil am Rhein, Germany,  1990-93

    The ill-fated (but multi-awardwinning) design for Cardiff’s Bay Opera House

    She designed the sharp “suitcase-sized” sets for the Pet Shop Boys’ Nightlife tour, 1999-2000

    …and for the Metapolis Ballet

    Her first museum: the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati

    In 2004, she was the first woman to win the Pritzker Prize (and thank her colleagues)

    The Stirling Prize-winning Evelyn Grace Academy in Brixton, 2006-2010

    London Aquatics Center, 2011

    Dame Zaha Hadid, 2012

    All the lewks!

    One of her last designs, for the Central Bank of Iraq

    And this book of conversations with Zaha by the ubiquitous Hans Ulrich Obrist

    As for our final round-up, NPR has more more on Josephine’s Baker‘s induction into the Pantheon.

    Anna May Wong‘s shiny new quarter

    And English Heritage has more on Caroline Norton and Ellen Craft, recent blue-plaque honorees!

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month. And don’t forget, we have a Patreon! Thanks to all of our current supporters! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast
    If you prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #47: Milena Jesenská (11/19/2021)

    In this edition of the Dead Ladies Show Podcast, DLS co-founder Katy Derbyshire brings you the story of Milena Jesenská live from the stage of the Berlin translation festival Translationale, held at the Collegium Hungaricum. 

    A journalist, writer, editor and translator, Milena Jesenská is often simply called “Kafka’s Milena” for her connection to the famous writer. But her life and work deserve far more attention. 

    Born in Prague in the former Austria-Hungary, now Czech Republic, Milena Jesenská straddled cultures and languages, politics and ideologies. As part of an underground resistance, she helped many refugees to escape the dangers of National Socialism, but was captured by the Gestapo and died in a concentration camp in Germany. 

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can read the transcript here.

    Show Notes:



    Young Milena

    Later in life

    A good friend to many

    Memorial plaque, photo ©Karen Margolis

    If you want to read more, there are a few good biographies out there. The one mentioned is available in Czech, German and Italian, Alena Wagnerová’s Milena Jesenská. Katy also read the excellent Kafka, Love and Courage. The Life of Milena Jesenská by Mary Hockaday. There’s a German YA bio: Lebendiges Feuer by Alois Prinz, for all you German-speaking young adults out there. Or you could read the one written by her friend Margarete Buber-Neumann, entitled Milena, or the one by her daughter Jana Černá, Kafka’s Milena. As long as you remember her surname.

    Thanks to the Translationale, the Toledo Program, and Weltlesebühne for inviting us. 
    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.
    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

    The Dead Ladies Show was founded by Florian Duijsens and Katy Derbyshire. The podcast is created, produced, edited, and presented by Susan Stone. Don’t forget, we have a Patreon! Thanks to all of our current supporters! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast
    If you prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #46: Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven (10/16/2021)

    In this edition of the Dead Ladies Show Podcast, DLS co-founder Florian Duijsens introduces us to the eccentric Dada artist Baroness Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven. An eternally eclectic, German-born New Yorker, the Baroness was known for living life as a work of art, wearing a collage of found items, from tin cans to postage stamps to live birds, seducing almost everyone she met, and creating mind-blowing poetry and sculptures, yet never making any money off them. These days, she deserves some reclaimed recognition for creating the found art genre known as readymades, including a particular infamous sculpture credited to French artist Marcel Duchamp (or Marcel Dushit, as the Baroness called him.)

    DLS other co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins producer/host Susan Stone to introduce the show, which was recorded in front of a live audience of enthusiastic college students as part of Bard College Berlin‘s student-organized Pankumenta festival back in 2019.

    **This episode contains brief mentions of suicide and suicide attempts as well as some humorous profanity**

    Also available on SpotifyApple PodcastsRadioPublicPocket CastsStitcherGoogle Podcasts, and Acast. You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.

    Notes:



    Berlin’s Wintergarten theatre

    Melchior Lechter’s Orpheus, for which Elsa modeled

    Some of Endell’s now lost handiwork: Hofatelier Elvira, run by lesbian power couple Anita Augspurg and Sophia Goudstikker

    Felix Greve, translator of Oscar Wilde and André Gide – later to reinvent himself as the Canadian Frederick Philip Grove

    Elsa arrives in the US!

    Alone again, Elsa poses in her apartment.

    God (1917)

    Cathedral (1918)

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

  • Podcast #45: Nana Yaa Asantewaa (9/16/2021)

    In the first episode of our fifth podcast season, you’ll hear the Berlin-based British-Ghanaian author and political activist Sharon Dodua Otoo talking about her favourite woman who ever lived: Nana Yaa Asantewaa. This Asante queen led the 1900 war against British colonialism in present-day Ghana. When the British governor demanded the kingdom’s emblem of power, the Golden Stool, Nana Yaa Asantewaa encouraged the Asante government to fight back through a powerful speech, and was chosen to head an army of 5000 at the age of sixty.

    Sharon gives us all the context of who, what, where and when – and tells us how important Nana Yaa Asantewaa is as a role model for her and many others. DLS co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins Susan Stone to introduce this fascinating talk.

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    You can read the transcript here.

    Notes:

    The Golden Stool

    Statue showing the Golden Stool in Ghana

    There aren’t many photos of Nana Yaa Asantewaa, but there’s this:

    Not actually Nana Yaa Asantewaa, but the image most commonly associated with her

    Sharon mentions two key books:

    If you’d like to read Sharon’s own books in German or English, there are plenty to choose from.

    Here’s where to watch Vanessa Danso’s The Legendary Nana Yaa Asantewaa. Or you could defeat the colonial masters guided by the queen herself in a live-action game, from the safety of your own home.

    To finish off, here’s the school named after her, part of an impressive legacy.

    Yaa Asantewaa Girls’ Senior High School, Kumasi

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon. Thanks for listening!

    We’ll be back with a new episode in October.

  • Podcast #44: Irmgard Keun (6/20/2021)

    In this episode of the podcast, DLS co-founder Katy Derbyshire introduces us to daring German writer Irmgard Keun. As an ingenue, Irmgard’s writing debut was much more consequent than her acting debut, and she garnered praise and a film adaptation. Her books explored women’s lives in Weimar-era Berlin with a humor all her own, which of course meant the Nazis banned them. There’s dark wit, wild parties in the face of danger, and fabulous costume changes — oh, and an unreliable narrator. It’s a bit of Babylon Berlin meets Cabaret, perhaps.

    Irmgard Keun is also one of the original Dead Ladies (along with Dorothy Parker) that sparked the creation of the Dead Ladies Show in the first place!

    Our other DLS co-creator Florian Duijsens joins podcast producer and host Susan Stone for the introducing duties in our last episode of DLSP Season Four!

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    You can download the transcript, created by Annie Musgrove, here.

    Notes:

    Read more: Podcast #44: Irmgard Keun

    Irmgard looking dashing

    Plaque marking where (and which actual year) she was born in Berlin

    Young Irmgard

    Irmgard basking in her big fur coat

    Brigitte Helm in the film version of Gilgi, Eine von uns

    and Helm in Metropolis

    Stuck in Ostend with Joseph Roth

    and free again in Nice

    Reports of Irmgard’s death were greatly exaggerated

    Irmgard’s rather intense interior in Cologne

    Released from hospital!

    And at the height of the Keunissance in the film version of After Midnight

    Channel this energy next time someone tries to get you to work for free

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon. Thanks for listening!

    We’ll be back with a new season and new episode in September.

  • Podcast #43: Bebe Barron (5/13/2021)

    This episode presents a first: our presenter (our very own Susan Stone!) actually met the lady in question. Bebe Barron was a bohemian, composer, and electronic music pioneer. She and her husband Louis worked avant-garde art-makers like John Cage and Maya Deren, and hung out with Anais Nin, Henry Miller, Joseph Campbell, and more. The pair is credited with inventing the tape loop, and possibly the audio book. It’s certainly the case that they composed and created the first electronic music — or electro-acoustic — feature film soundtrack. Electronic music as we know it would not exist without Bebe, nor would the sounds we associate with outer space.

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can download the transcript, created by Rachel Pronger, here.

    Notes:

    Read more: Podcast #43: Bebe Barron

    A real reel-to-reel recorder

    Anaïs Nin, and you can find out more about their friendship in this interview.

    An excerpt from Anaïs Nin’s House of Incest audiobook as produced and recorded by the Barrons. You can order a CD copy here.

    Tubular!

    Louis & Bebe, bohemians

    Louis & Bebe, professionals

    The sole surviving copy of Bells of Atlantis

    Kirk Douglas, Vincente Minnelli, Lana Turner, and Dore Schary, on the set of The Bad and the Beautiful

    An excerpt from Forbidden Planet, with gloriously bleepy sound effects from the Barrons

    If you try this out, let us know if it works!

    Bebe in later years

    Bebe and her husband Leonard Neubauer in 2005, picture by Susan Stone

    And you can watch the new doc on Bebe and the other electronic pioneers, Sisters With Transistors, here.

    You can still hear Susan’s NPR story on Bebe from 2005 here. Our theme music is not by Bebe, but “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon. Thanks for listening!

  • Podcast #42: Emily Hahn (4/8/2021)

    Episode 42 is all about the American writer and journalist Emily Hahn, also known as Mickey.

    She qualified as a mining engineer, wrote greeting-card copy, travelled the world and authored 54 books and more than 200 articles and short stories. Aside from that, she led an unconventional private life and kept a number of different monkeys. Hear all about her from our co-founder Florian Duijsens, recorded at Berlin’s ACUD Studio in April 2019.

    Show notes:

    A young Emily (back row, second right) with her family

    Emily’s first book

    Emily’s second book was a little different, a rather censored memoir of her year in Africa.

    Followed by a novelized story of local women suffering at the hands of white men.

    One of Victor Sassoon’s tamer photos

    Poet Shao Xunmei

    On returning to the USA

    Carola’s father Charles Boxer joins the family.

    If you’d like to find out more, Florian recommends two biographies:

    Ken Cuthbertson’s Nobody Said Not to Go and Taras Grescoe’s Shanghai Grand.

    Taras Grescoe also authored this fascinating New Yorker story about the time Emily was taken for a spy.

    And here’s daughter Carola Boxer Vecchio on Advanced Style…

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month!

  • Podcast #41: Annette von Droste-Hülshoff (3/15/2021)

    In this episode, Anneke Lubkowitz introduces us to the brilliant and strange 19th-century writer and poet Annette von Droste-Hülshoff. This Dead Lady was a Lady in the literal sense – she was born into nobility, and the life her family expected for her was far different from the one she led. Choosing the male occupation of poet, and the unladylike hobby of fossil collecting, nature devotee Annette could often be found wandering the muddy moors or writing away in a turret. Her ahead-of-her-time way with verse included timeless poems and a work of gothic fiction considered by some to be one of the first murder mysteries.

    Via Zoom from the bright green rooms of Annette von Droste-Hülshoff’s former home Haus Ruschhaus, Anneke also reads some newly translated poems from Droste’s collections (thanks to the translators: Shane Anderson, Daniel Falb, Monika Rinck, and Annie Rutherford!).

    Anneke live from Annette’s study, Katy and Florian smiling from their homes in Berlin

    This show was created in collaboration with StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival, with help from the Burg Hülshoff Center for Literature. Thanks to both!

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can read the transcript here.

    Notes:

    Gazing at us from one side of the 20 DM note

    Burg Hülshoff on a sunny day

    Young Annette

    Some of her favorite fossils

    The Bökerhof, drawn by Annette herself. Read Karen Duve’s well-researched novel Fräulein Nette’s kurzer Sommer or Barbara Beuys’ excellent biography to learn what happened here.

    The Rüschhaus

    Her “snail’s shell”

    Casper David Friedrich’s Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog (1818)

    Annette at 41, portrait by Johann Joseph Sprick, 1838

    Annette in her garret overlooking Lake Constance

    Daguerrotype from 1845

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month!

  • Podcast #40: Beryl Gilroy (2/12/2021)

    The star of our 40th (!) episode is author, educator, and therapist Beryl Gilroy. Born in what was then British Guiana, she trained as a teacher before migrating to London in 1952 as part of the Windrush generation and worked all manner of jobs until becoming one of the very first Black head teachers in the UK. Her groundbreaking debut, Black Teacher (1976), documented her journey up to that point, and she’d keep publishing until her death in 2001. Telling her story is Berlin-based author Divya Ghelani.

    And if you want to attend a very special live Dead Ladies Show via Zoom next month, join us at StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival, on 11 March (free tickets available here).

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    Show notes:

    Beryl amidst some lucky pupils

    That tagline in the flesh

    Lulu: very notably not a dead lady

    Her debut book is due to be reissued this summer by Faber & Faber

    A short interview with Beryl’s colleague (and supporter!) Yvonne Connolly, who was the UK’s first head teacher

    The original illustration of Prince Bumpo in Doctor Dolittle

    Divya in ACUD’s balmy courtyard last September, when this episode was recorded

    Sadly, the campaign Divya mentions to rename Beryl’s school in her honor did not succeed. Read more about that here.

    The podcast is created, produced, edited, and presented by Susan Stone. Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month. 

    Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast
    If you prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #39: Gráinne Mhaol (Grace O’Malley) (1/16/2021)

    Episode 39 introduces Gráinne Mhaol, also known as Grace O’Malley, the legendary Irish pirate queen. 

    Translator Laura Radosh presents the rollicking tale of this tremendous woman, who has been lauded as “a most famous femynyne sea captain,” and “the dark lady of Doona.” Gráinne Mhaol was head of the O’Malley dynasty in 16th-century Ireland, owning up to 1000 cattle and horses, leading men on land and sea, and allegedly wreaking cruel vengeance for the murder of a lover. When her sons and half-brother were captured by the English, she is said to have met with Queen Elizabeth I and negotiated their release in Latin.

    Enjoy!

    You can also find a transcript of this episode, by Annie Musgrove, here.



    Show notes:

    Clare Island Castle, the cosy home of Eoghan Dubdhara and Margaret O’Malley where Gráinne Mhaol was born.

    Driving cattle to the open lands for summer grazing (booleying) in 19th-century Ireland

    The former Cock’s Castle, now Hen’s Castle

    Gráinne’s galleys may have looked something like this.

    Map of Ireland around Gráinne’s time

    Pirate punishment (no pirates were harmed in the making of this picture)

    London Bridge before major fire damage in 1633

    Scene from the Broadway musical Pirate Queen

    “Contemporary” depiction of Gráinne and Elizabeth, made only 200 years later

    If you fancy being told the story by a dude with an excellent mid-70s beard, this 4-minute RTÉ clip is television gold.

    For those with more time on their hands, Anne Chambers’ Gráinne biography comes highly recommended. The historian also runs the “official website of the pirate queen”.

    How about this combo for long dark evenings?

    Speaking of books, we’ve made some lists for you! Order from bookshop.org in the US or the UK to contribute to independent bookstores, and a little bit to us too. Or if you spot something you like the look of, why not visit or contact your favourite local bricks-and-mortar bookshop to show them some love?

    It wouldn’t be January 2021 if we didn’t recommend a couple of related sea shanties (sort of). There’s “Five Pint Mary” or a whole suite, Granuaile. “Grace O’Malley” hits the spot – or try some Irish pirate metal. Warning: three out of four of these videos feature cartoon depictions of a red-headed piratess.

    The podcast is created, produced, edited, and presented by Susan Stone. Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month. 

    Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast
    If you prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #38: Sister Rosetta Tharpe (12/9/2020)

    In Episode 38, we hear the sweet, sweet music of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, known as the godmother of rock’n’roll. 

    DLS co-founder Florian Duijsens brings us the tale of this legendary guitarist and gospel singer who had a profound influence on musicians like Little Richard, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, and Aretha Franklin. She took to the stage at the age of four, and never really left it. 
    Sister Rosetta Tharpe made the first gospel record to hit the charts, played with Cab Calloway at the Cotton Club, attracted 25,000 paying customers to her third wedding, got in trouble with gospel purists and recorded a live album in Paris in 1964.

    To start off the episode, Susan and Katy toast to the end of a strange year with the Dead Ladies Show signature tipple, affordable German bubbly Rotkäppchen (Red Riding Hood) and give thanks for the support we’ve had, and that yet to come. 

    The presentation in this episode was recorded live with help from Brigitte Hamar at the Studiobühne der Universität Münster where we were invited by the Burg Hülshoff Center for Literature. Other talks from this event in German can be found in the Center’s Mediathek: https://www.burg-huelshoff.de/en/medien/mediathek/dead-ladies-show
    Thanks also to Fiona, Kati, Tobias, Feline and Jörg for inviting and assisting us.
    Here we are with our co-presenters Karosh Taha and Bernadette Hengst.

    Show notes:

    Here’s a headline on the big wedding

    And the record made of it!

    With her mother, Katie Bell Nubin

    Playing at a secular venue…

    …and in church.

    Performing with Marie Knight…

    …and signing in furs.

    Having fun with some kids

    Katie’s record

    In later years

    A late gravestone…

    …and a late tribute

    Sequinned and Gibsoned

    Florian recommends two top resources: Gayle Wald’s biography Shout, Sister, Shout! and Mick Czasky’s film The Godmother or Rock’n’Roll.

    AND! Check out Florian’s fabulous PLAYLIST for more sounds from Sister Rosetta Tharpe and the gang.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.
    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month. 

    Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you’d prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #37: Chevalière d’Eon (11/12/2020)

    Our 37th podcast episode celebrates a legendary spy, writer, and fencer whose very existence caused such a public uproar that it caused a grumpy British judge to outlaw all betting on a person’s gender. Although her story has been told many, many times before, most versions either invent her life story entirely or do not honor her own identity. Though she wanted to be recognized as the woman she was, that didn’t mean she was happy with society’s expectations of what a woman could or should wear, look like, or be around the time of the French Revolution. Mary Wollstonecraft was a fan, ranking her among the likes of Sappho and the Empress of Russia, and we think you’ll enjoy her story too.

    Dead Ladies Show co-founder Florian Duijsens joins podcast host/producer Susan Stone to discuss our first episode about a woman we would now probably call a trans woman. Note that she is best known in the literature and all around the internet as the Chevalier d’Eon, Chevalière d’Eon is probably the more grammatically correct title 🙂 We also discuss the Dead Ladies Show’s famous three rules, and talk about about another unruly rulebreaker, Anne Lister.

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can find the transcript here.

    Show notes:

    Here she is in a portrait by Thomas Stewart.

    This is the entirely fabricated anime adaptation

    And this is the only slightly more French film adaptation.


    Embed from Getty Images

    Note her lovely medal

    And here she is earlier in life.

    Note the funny helmet

    The caricature from which Michael Urie got his Met Gala inspiration

    Freemason caricature with mysterious accoutrements

    Marie Antoinette’s enormous dress

    That classy portrait from 1778

    Her big fencing battle with the Black composer and champion fencer Chevalier de Saint-Georges. Born in Guadeloupe, he’d fought in the first all-Black regiment in Europe!

    And here she is as Athena

    Here she is late in life, more religious but still wearing that medal.

    And if you want to know more about the Public Universal Friend, check out these two podcast episodes by NPR’s Throughline and What’s Her Name!

    ******

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.
    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

    Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you’d prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #36: Shirley Jackson (10/15/2020)

    Our 36th podcast episode brings you a glimpse of the acclaimed author of some of the most chilling tales in contemporary American literature, Shirley Jackson. Her short story “The Lottery” has been a true classic since its publication in 1948. Jackson blended gothic and horror elements with explorations of women’s alienation and search for identity. In her real life, she was forced to balance her tremendous talent with the everyday duties of a wife and mother and societal expectations of femininity which she defied at almost every step.  Our presentation from Krista Ahlberg comes courtesy of Dead Ladies Show NYC, and was recorded live by Christopher Neil in the Red Room at New York’s KGB Bar in 2019.

    Dead Ladies Show co-founder Florian Duijsens joins podcast host/producer Susan Stone to discuss some of Shirley’s stories and the films and series in the extended Shirley Jackson universe.

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can read the transcript here.

    Show notes:

    Shirley and her college best friend

    Here’s Shirley in 1938.

    Shirley reading her classic short story “The Lottery”

    One of those cartoons Shirley drew of her family

    Shirley and her kids

    Some of the medication Shirley might have been prescribed

    The trailer for the original film version of The Haunting of Hill House

    And Lili Taylor in the 1999 remake

    And the Netflix version

    And We Have Always Lived in the Castle, which cannot be a match for the book

    To cleanse your palate, here’s the trailer for Josephine Decker’s Shirley, starring Elizabeth Moss

    ******

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.
    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month.

    Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you’d prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #35: Ida B. Wells (9/17/2020)

    We’re back with Episode 35! In this program, we’re coming to you live, limited, and socially distant from the courtyard of our beloved Berlin venue ACUD! 

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can download the transcript here.

    On this sultry September evening, DLS Podcast producer and host Susan Stone took the stage to present the life and times of the unstoppable Ida B. Wells! This pioneering African-American investigative journalist, suffragist and activist was a pint-sized powerhouse. Born into slavery in Mississippi in 1862, Ida’s world opened up with the Emancipation Proclamation, and she became a teacher, newspaper editor, and international lecturer, fighting injustice and racism all the way. Her hold-nothing-back editorials and books exposed and documented the horrific practice of lynching in the American South. On her steely path to justice, she accepted no compromises, making friends and enemies along the way. 

    DLS co-founders Katy Derbyshire and Florian Duijsens take up the introductions as we get back into the podcast swing of things after a summer break.   

    Show notes:

    Ida B. Wells

    The People’s Grocery in Memphis

    And its historic marker, from https://lynchingsitesmem.org/

    Handsome lawyer Ferdinand Lee Barnett

    With her children: Charles , Herman , Ida and Alfreda. Archivio GBB

    Wearing that button… Ida B. Wells Papers, Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library (061.03.00)

    To find out more, you can read Ida B. Well’s autobiography, Crusade for Justice, published by her daughter in 1970. Susan also recommends Paula J. Giddings’ Ida: A Sword among Lions. And watch out from January 2021 for Ida B. the Queen by her granddaughter Michelle Duster.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode next month. 

    Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you’d prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #34: Willa Muir (6/17/2020)

    In Episode 34, we’re once more in Muenster as guests of the Burg Hülshoff Centre for Literature, which happens to be named after a Dead Lady poet, Annette von Droste-Hülshoff! This time around, we’ll get introduced to Willa Muir, a prolific translator who brought Kafka into English for the first time. Born on a small Scottish island, she was eyewitness to some of Europe’s most important moments. She worked in tandem with her husband Edwin, who somehow managed to get all the credit… Presented by our co-founder Katy Derbyshire, also featuring Florian Duijsens, and produced and introduced by producer Susan Stone.

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can download the transcript here.

    Show notes:

    Here’s Willa’s portrait by Nigel McIsaac, held by National Galeries Scotland

    Willa1

    And this is the editorial board of her college journal, with Willa probably at the front, but possibly at the back.

    Willa2

    The racy cover of Willa and Edwin’s very first translation

    Willa3

    And all four of “their” Kafka books

    Edwin, Gavin, Willa and cat at home

    Willa8

    Two books of Willa’s own writing

    You can hear Willa’s lovely voice talking about Edwin at the London Review of Books’ The Space. And there’s more about Willa Muir’s writing at Scottish PEN’s very well named Dangerous Women Project.

    For those now hooked on Kafka translating content, we strongly recommend Michelle Woods’ book Kafka Translated, which also has a lot of material about Willa.

    If you understand German and want to listen to a three-minute podcast about our show in Münster, the Lesebürger*innen have exactly what you need!

     

    The center’s online audio platform is called DROSTE FM.

     

    Their online Droste festival is happening right now, so German-speaking lovers of modern-day takes on dead lady poets can dig right in. And non-German-speaking music-lovers can check out their accompanying Spotify playlists.

     

    ******
     

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you’d prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast

  • Podcast #33: Dorothy L. Sayers (5/13/2020)
    Episode 33 takes us virtually to Muenster as guests of the Burg Hülshoff Centre for Literature, which happens to be named after a Dead Lady poet, Annette von Droste-Hülshoff! However, we’re here to talk about mystery queen Dorothy L. Sayers.
    Dorothy, or DLS, as she preferred to be called, is probably best known for her crime novels featuring posh amateur detective Lord Peter Wimsey. But she also gave us an impressive English translation of Dante’s Divine Comedy, much loved to this day. Something of a child prodigy, she learned Latin at six and studied at Oxford before women were actually awarded degrees. She made an early living in advertising and later wrote essays on both Christian and feminist subjects, including the fabulously titled “Are Women Human?” All this while publishing sixteen detective novels, plus numerous plays and short stories, and leading what might best be called a turbulent private life.
    Dead Ladies Show co-founder Florian Duijsens unravels the complicated plot of her life, as other co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins host & producer Susan Stone to set the stage. 
    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. Find the transcript here.
    Show notes:
    Here are Annette von Droste-Hülshoff, Florian doing his thing, and that chandelier…

    A young Dorothy in drag

    DLS2
    Dorothy and Eric the skull
    DLS3
    Some of her most famous ads:
    DLS4
    And some of her less famous books:
    DLS8
    Her enduring character, Lord Peter Wimsey
    DLS5
    Florian recommends two biographies…

    Dorothy L. Sayers by Barbara Reynolds and A Careless Rage for Life by David Coomes.

    That 1987 BBC series is available on YouTube.
    And if you understand German and want to listen to a three-minute podcast about the show, the Lesebürger*innen have exactly what you need!
    ******

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in June. Don’t forget, we now have a Patreon! Please consider supporting our transcripts project and our ongoing work: www.patreon.com/deadladiesshowpodcast

    If you’d prefer to make a one-time donation, here’s the link: paypal.me/dlspodcast
  • Podcast #32: Rose Mackenberg (4/17/2020)

    Welcome to our 32nd podcast, in which Nicole Saraniero and Dana Lewis (recorded live by Christopher Neil in the Red Room at New York’s KGB Bar in 2019) conjure up enthusiastic ghost-buster Rose Mackenberg. Sometimes called “Harry Houdini’s Girl Detective,” Rose was dedicated to debunking psychics who scammed vulnerable and grieving Americans recovering from the tragedies of World War I and the Spanish Flu of 1918. She started out as a stenographer and private investigator, joining forces with famed magician Houdini to crusade against fraud and psychic swindlers.

    Here it comes, produced and presented by Susan Stone:

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can find the transcript here.

    Show notes:

    Here are Nicole (left) and Dana (right) on stage:

    L_Nicole_R_Dana

    Curious about those costumes?

    mackenbergcostumes

    Publicity material from the time:

    spook_spy.696x0-is

    If you want to read more, there’s a compilation of her writing put together by Tony Wolf, Houdini’s “Girl Detective”: The Real-Life Ghost-Busting Adventures of Rose Mackenberg.

    Rose also has a belated obituary in the New York Times‘ rather good “Overlooked No More” series, dedicated to women who weren’t written about when they died.

    A few excellent pictures of Rose in action are available in the Saturday Evening Post.

    And she’s also featured in artist A R Hopwood’s exploration of The Ethics of Deception for London’s Wellcome Collection.

    ******

    In these coronavirus times, our venues could use your support. You can donate to ACUD in Berlin via Startnext, and/or to the KGB Bar in NYC via Fundly, and/or your own local cultural stronghold.

    ******

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in May. And here’s a link to our Patreon, in case you’d like to help fund our work.

    Support for the Dead Ladies Show podcast comes from the Berliner Senat.

    sen_kueu_logo_quer_en

     

  • Podcast #31: Alexandra Kollontai (3/8/2020)

    Welcome to episode 31, in which Dead Ladies Show co-founder Katy Derbyshire talks about Russian revolutionary Alexandra Kollontai. She was present at the Copenhagen Second Congress of Socialist Women in 1910, where she voted for the introduction of International Women’s Day. Kollontai worked hard to promote women’s interests in the early Soviet Union, often a losing battle. And she had some exciting ideas about love in the new society.

    Here it is, introduced and produced by Susan Stone for your enlightenment and enjoyment:

    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can find the transcript here.

     

    Show notes:

     

    Koll2

    Katy’s favourite pic, Kollontai (centre) at the Congress of the Peoples of the East, Baku 1920

     

     

    Koll3

    Young Alexandra

     

     

     

    Koll4

    Rabotnitsa, or The Woman Worker, 1923

     

     

    Koll5

    Kollontai as a Soviet ambassador

     

     

    Koll8

    With medals

     

     

    For further reading, Katy recommends Cathy Porter’s excellent Alexandra Kollontai, A Biography, which gives a lot of helpful background information. And if you read German, Barbara Kirchner’s edition of Kollontai’s Autobiographie einer sexuell emanzipierten Kommunistin.

     

     

     

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in April. And here’s a link to our Patreon, in case you’d like to help fund our work.

    Support for the Dead Ladies Show podcast comes from the Berliner Senat.

    sen_kueu_logo_quer_en

  • Podcast #30: Emma Goldman (2/14/2020)
    Episode 30! Can you believe it? For a little inspiration in these grim political times, podcast producer & presenter Susan Stone chooses a brand spanking new presentation from Dead Ladies Show co-founder Florian Duijsens. 
    Our other dear co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins in on the comfy couch to introduce the fabulous Emma Goldman. This anarchist philosopher, activist, and writer was determined, persistent, and sure in her convictions. Which, duly, got her convicted. Often called Red Emma, she’s surely no true role model, but a heck of a lot of fun to learn about. 
    Susan and Katy also talk about the inaugural Emma Goldman Awards that just took place in Vienna, and provide some rather poppy musical inspiration. 
    Also available on Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. And you can find the transcript here.
    Show notes:
    Emma_Goldman's_family
    Here’s the Goldman family in the bad old days.

    Emma Goldman

    Mugshots

    Emma in the media

    EL8
    In Russia with Sasha Berkmann
    AL
    And here’s Audré Lorde in that T-shirt on the lake.
    You might also like to watch the film about John Reed and Louise Bryant, which features Emma, REDS. But do make sure you set aside three hours and fifteen minutes…
    For further reading, there’s Emma’s autobiography Living My Life, available in full online at The Anarchist Library, or abridged from Penguin Classics.
    And Florian recommends books by Vivian Gornick, Candace Falk, and Sharon Rudahl.

    For revolutionary dancing purposes, there is Sophie Ellis-Bextor. Enjoy!

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in March. And here’s a link to our Patreon, in case you’d like to help fund transcripts.

    Support for the Dead Ladies Show podcast comes from the Berliner Senat.

    sen_kueu_logo_quer_en

  • Podcast #29: Zora Neale Hurston (1/15/2020)

    Episode 29 presents a giant of the Harlem Renaissance: writer, anthropologist and zombie finder Zora Neale Hurston!

    Zora may be best known for her 1937 novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, but her love of adventure and willingness to re-write her own biography are sure to delight fans old and new.

    Writer and scholar Fatin Abbas tells Zora’s tale from the stage in ACUD, and Dead Ladies Show co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins podcast producer and presenter Susan Stone to put things in motion.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. And you can find the transcript here.

    Show notes:

    You can read more about Zora’s remarkable hometown Eatonville here.

    imagehandler-7
    Photograph of Zora Neale Hurston, Langston Hughes, & Jessie Fauset, 1927

    Enjoy this rare fieldwork footage Zora shot, which a kind Youtuber has paired with recordings of her voice!

    Cudjoe_Abache
    Abache and Cudjoe Kazoola Lewis were among the last group of Africans forcibly transported to the United States aboard the slave ship Clotilde. Zora told Cudjoe’s life story in Barracoon, published only very recently.
    zombie-LIFE-Magazine-Dec-13-1937
    Zora’s photograph of “zombie” Felicia Felix-Mentor

    The books Fatin recommends are these: Wrapped in Rainbows: The Life of Zora Neale Hurston by Valerie Boyd, and Zora’s own Dust Tracks on a Road. You can listen to more of her ethnographic recordings (and her singing!) here, and here’s that Lithub story about her role in the first Black baby doll.

    sara-lee-doll.jpg

     

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in February. And here’s a link to our Patreon, in case you’d like to help fund transcripts.

    Support for the Dead Ladies Show podcast comes from the Berliner Senat.

    sen_kueu_logo_quer_en

  • Podcast #28: Fanny Cradock (12/12/2019)

    Episode 28 is a special one, available in English and also in German!

    Our talented bilingual presenter is Mary Scherpe, the woman behind Stil in Berlin and co-founder of the Feminist Food Club. Working in that intersection of food and style, Mary’s almost predestined to tell us all about Britain’s extravagant television chef Fanny Cradock, whose life was not quite what you might expect… Recorded live as part of ACUD‘s Backyard Summer.

    Plus, producer Susan Stone invites Florian Duijsens and Katy Derbyshire into her very own kitchen to pop some corks and talk turkey, game, raisins, and other festive foodie fun.

    Here’s the English version:

    Und hier gibt es die Folge auf deutsch:

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can find our transcript of the English version here.

    Show notes

    Here’s Fanny with her (most) beloved husband Johnny.

    f&j

    And here she is putting on the style earlier in life.

    Fanny 50s

    In the BBC studio.

    fc

    A medley of dishes, original and recreated…

    The BBC’s archive offers a wealth of Fanny Cradock Cooks for Christmas episodes for viewers in the UK. Or you could check out the 2006 movie Fear of Fanny, which exposed a new side to the celebrity chef.

    But whatever you do, you probably have to watch the eye-rolling incident…

    If you have more time on your hands, there’s the bizarre British Gas ad.

    Mary recommends Fanny’s autobiography, Something’s Burning, and also Clive Ellis’s Fabulous Fanny. And we’re rather taken with the blog Keep Calm and Fanny On, recreating Fanny’s non-meaty recipes like the blue chestnut cream one above. 

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in January. And here’s a link to our Patreon page, in case you’d like to help fund transcripts.

  • Podcast #27: Margaret Fountaine (11/14/2019)

    On Episode 27, we meet a Dead Lady Lepidopterist! Dead Ladies Show co-founder Florian Duijsens introduces us to Margaret Fountaine, an English explorer and naturalist who collected butterflies and loved love. Her exciting scientific life and world travels were well-known, but her romantic adventures were only revealed when Margaret’s copious diaries were read in 1978, 100 years after she first started them at age 15.

    Florian’s talk was recorded live at ACUD (shoutout to sound engineer Hyui Ines Rmi) just two months ago in Berlin. For the podcast, our other Dead Ladies Show co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins podcast producer & presenter Susan Stone to revel in Margaret’s lovely and at times heart-breaking tale.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can download a transcript here.

    Show notes:

    diaries

    These are the diaries that emerged in 1978.

    And here’s some portraits of Margaret herself from the diaries.

    Margaret Fountaine06a

    Septimus Hewson, the cowlicked singer from Limerick

    1895Humber

    The kind of bike the Fountaine sisters rode 600km through Europe

    diary khalil

    Khalil as he appears in the diary

    Transactionsofen1911roya 0374

    Some of Margaret’s beautiful art

    paperedeuploeamarg

    The euploea phaenareta margaretae, named after Margaret

    Picture1.png

    The ceratinia ninonia neimyi, which she named after Khalil

    003

    Margaret late in life

    Margaret’s guerillaed blue plaque

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in January. And here’s a link to our Patreon page, in case you’d like to help fund transcripts.

     

  • Podcast #26: Doreen Valiente & Martha Maxwell (10/17/2019)

    Episode 26 brings you spooky Dead Lady tales all the way from NYC! First, Claire Carroll introduces us to England’s Doreen Valiente, known as the mother of modern witchcraft. In the UK and beyond, she was key in the spread of modern day Wicca, now a world-wide religion. Doreen also had more than a few secrets under her cape.
    Then, it’s time for a live lady taxidermist talking about a Dead Lady taxidermist! Divya Anantharaman of Gotham Taxidermy brings us the story of American naturalist and taxidermy pioneer Martha Maxwell.

    The talks were recorded live at two separate editions of NYC DLS, which is hosted and curated by Molly O’Laughlin Kemper, with support from Nicolas Kemper and Christopher Neil and Lori Schwarz, general manager of the KGB Bar’s Red Room, where the event is held. Join the NYC newsletter to stay updated on the next ones!

    Dead Ladies Show co-founder Katy Derbyshire joins podcast producer & presenter Susan Stone to chat about these spooky wonderful dames and more.

     

     

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can find the transcript of this episode here.

    Show notes:

    Now for some pictures!

    DoreenWithToolsofTrade
    Image: © Doreen Valiente Foundation

    Here’s Doreen with some of the tools of her trade.

    doreenvalientealtar
    Image: © Doreen Valiente Foundation

    And here are some of her ceremonial artifacts shown as they would be on an altar.

    doreenvalientebooks
    Image: © Doreen Valiente Foundation

    Ritual books owned by Doreen Valiente, including Gerald Gardner’s Book of Shadows at the back

    DV-plaque-1

    The Blue Plaque marking the last home Doreen lived in. It’s the only historic plaque on a public housing building in the UK.

    …onto the taxidermy portion of our show…

    Divya-BitchBetterTaxidermy_credit_MollyO-K
    Image: © Molly O’Laughlin

    Presenter Divya Anantharaman artfully combines Rihanna lyrics with taxidermy to illustrate Martha Maxwell’s burning desire for knowledge.

    LionofGripsholm
    Lion of Gripsholm. Copyright: Kungl. Hovstaterna/The Royal Court, Sweden

    Taxidermy hasn’t always been done skillfully. The Lion of Gripsholm is an infamous example of what happens when someone who has never seen the animal alive is tasked with recreating it from its skin alone.

    ozelot_03_neu_2015_c_carola-radke_mfn
    Image: © Museum of Natural History, Berlin

    And, get a load of these ocelots! Can you *spot* the difference? Again, one was prepared by someone with little to no knowledge of the actual animal. 

    Martha_Maxwell_in_the_field_CDV
    Martha Maxwell sensibly attired in her hunting outfit.

    MaxwellP200712_lg-1-800x451

    martha-maxwell-ccde4675-346d-4186-83e3-6f14d99b40c-resize-750

    Martha_Maxwell_Rocky_Mountain_Series_1876_P2007153_lg
    Maxwell’s display at the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition was the first of its kind.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in November. And here’s a link to our Patreon page, in case you’d like to help fund our work.

     

  • Podcast #25: LaVern Baker (9/19/2019)

    Episode 24 was recorded especially in Berlin, with our co-founder Katy Derbyshire telling us about the blues and R&B singer LaVern Baker.  Recorded live at Restaurant März, and produced and presented by Susan Stone in September 2019.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast. You can download a transcript here.

    Show notes & pics:

    Club de Lisa

    Chicago’s Club DeLisa, 1942

    Soul on Fire

    That first hit

    Tweedlee

    The Tweedlee Dee Girl herself

    Height of fame

    Height of fame

    LB7

    Red lipstick

    Furs

    Pretty in mink

    Philippines

    Marines on shore leave, Philippines

    LB9

    Later in life

    LB3

    Katy’s favourite pic.

     

    You can read more about LaVern Baker in Chip Deffaa’s book Blue Rhythms. Six Lives in Rhythm and Blues.

    Head over to Spotify for our special playlist…

    Or look up all those different “Saved” covers on YouTube… Skip Phil Collins to 1:32 to watch LaVern do it in colour just after being rediscovered in 1986, plus a great little interview at the end. And a longer interview is hereBut whatever you do, don’t listen to “Think Twice, Version X” at work.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in October. And here’s a link to our Patreon page, in case you’d like to help fund transcripts.

  • Podcast #24: Hedy Lamarr (6/20/2019)

    Episode 24 comes fresh from Berlin, where our writer and translation friend Isabel Cole tells us about glamorous Hollywood star-slash-inventor Hedy Lamarr.  Recorded live at ACUD, and produced and presented by Susan Stone in June 2019.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    Show notes & pics:

    YoungHedy

    A young Hedy, then still Hedwig Kiesler

    HedyEcstasy

    An ecstatic Hedy

    Hedy in hats

    comradeX_MBDCOXX_EC001_H.JPG

    Lamarr and Gable in Comrade X

    HedyPatent

    Hedy’s patent

    Posters

    HedyVictor

    With mom and Victor Mature

    HedyPerfume

    Liquid ecstasy

    HedyGrave

    Hedy’s grave site in Vienna

    If you’d like to read her ghostwritten autobiography Ecstasy and Me, you can buy it online. For more online fun, how about the less-racy-than-you-might-expect movie Ecstasy ? Especially good for horse enthusiasts.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode after a short summer break.

  • Podcast #23: Bessie Blount & Flo Kennedy (5/16/2019)

    Episode 23 is our first from New York City! It showcases two incredible black women who made major achievements in their fields. First off, journalist Amy Padnani tells us about the nurse, wartime inventor, and handwriting analyst Bessie Blount, followed by researcher Deborah Streahle on the radical feminist lawyer Florynce “Flo” Kennedy. Recorded live at KGB’s Red Room, and produced and presented by Susan Stone in May 2019.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, RadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Acast.

    Show notes & pics:

    Bessie1

    A young Bessie Blount, having taught herself to write with her feet and her mouth.

    Bessie2

    And here she is passing on that knowledge. Elmira Advertiser, April 24, 1958

    Bessie invention

    Bessie’s invention, as patented in 1951

    Bessie3

    As a handwriting analyst in later life. The Daily Journal

    You can read Amy Padnani’s obituary for Bessie Blount in the New York TimesOverlooked section, which Amy herself established. We thoroughly approve of this new initiative.

    ***

    And on to Florynce “Flo” Kennedy.

    Flo6_upright

    Early lawyer years, from her book (see below)

    Flo4

    Flo3

    A couple of our favorite pics showing Flo’s confident style

    Flo5

    Flo Kennedy at the N.O.W. march in 1972. Photo by Bettye Lane, courtesy of Schlesinger Library

    Flo_Book1

    Flo_Book2

    For further reading, there’s Kennedy’s autobiography with the great title Color Me Flo. My Hard Life and Good Times. Deborah also highly recommends Sherrie M. Randolph’s Florynce “Flo” Kennedy. The Life of a Black Feminist Radical.

    And it looks like there may be a documentary in the works, directed by Keirdra Bahruth.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon. Special thanks to Molly O’Laughlin Kemper for taking the Dead Ladies Show to New York City… and running with it!

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in June.

  • Podcast #22: Josephine Baker (4/18/2019)

    Episode 22 features our beloved co-host Florian Duijsens giving us the low-down on the multi-talented entertainer Josephine Baker. Recorded live at ACUD, and produced and presented by Susan Stone in April 2019.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple PodcastsRadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Acast.

    Show notes & pics:

    JBTumpie

    A very young “Tumpie”

    Josephine_Baker_1951

    Josephine looking glamorous

    Baker_Banana

    We couldn’t very well not share this one…

    JBUniform

    Wartime heroine in Free French uniform

    JBKing

    Speaking at the March on Washington in 1963: “I have walked into the palaces of kings and queens and into the houses of presidents. And much more. But I could not walk into a hotel in America and get a cup of coffee, and that made me mad. And when I get mad, you know that I open my big mouth. And then look out, ’cause when Josephine opens her mouth, they hear it all over the world…”

    For more gorgeous pics, check out this fancy spread in UK Vogue.

    Listen to Josephine singing in French in 1953. Or watch her dancing and acting in the 1935 French film Princess Tam Tam, or clowning and Charleston-ing.

    Fancy a trip to France? You can visit her chateau! Or go on a walking tour just outside Paris!

    For further reading, Florian recommends two titles:

    Jean-Claude Baker’s Josephine: The Hungry Heart, written with Chris Chase, and Josephine Baker and the Rainbow Tribe, by Matthew Pratt Guterl.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in May.

     

     

  • Podcast #21: Noor Inayat Khan (3/14/2019)

    Our 21st episode sees our beloved co-founder Katy Derbyshire tell the stirring story of Noor Inayat Khan, a pacifist who worked as a secret radio operator in occupied Paris. Recorded live at ACUD, and produced and presented by Susan Stone in March 2019.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, RadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Acast.

    Show notes & pics:

    Picture0
    The Khan family portrait, Noor’s the one with the bow

    Her father, Inayat, and his band

    You’ll have to imagine the groans.

    Embed from Getty Images

    Mata Hari and Noor’s father’s Royal Musicians of Hindustan

    Pirani_Ameena_Begum
    Noor’s mother, Pirani Ameena Begum (born Ora Ray Baker)

    noor
    Noor and her instrument

    Picture5

    See more of her books here.

    Picture12
    Some of the (wonderfully named) humans working in the SOE

    Picture6
    Noor’s ID card

    Picture7
    Katy’s grandmother!

    Picture8
    Vera Atkins (not Katy’s grandmother)

    Picture9
    Noor as a civilian

    You can see a picture of the radio she was lugging around Paris here.

    The plaque at Dachau commemorating Noor

    The trailer for Enemy of the Reich, the first biopic of Noor’s

    Picture10

    The biography by Shrabani Basu that Katy recommends

    Embed from Getty Images

  • Podcast #20: Anna May Wong (2/14/2019)

    Our 20th episode features our beloved co-host Florian Duijsens spilling the details on Hollywood actress and Berlin favourite Anna May Wong. Recorded live at ACUD as part of our series on dead Berlin ladies, and produced and presented by Susan Stone in February 2019.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, RadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Acast.

    Show Notes

    Here are a few of the many available shots of Anna looking ravishing and yet thoroughly modern:

    AMW4AMW3AMW2AMW1

    And here she is with some other famous faces:

    AMW6AMW7

    A couple of movie posters:

    Listen to Billie Holiday singing the song inspired by Anna May Wong: “These Foolish Things (Remind Me of You)”.

    Want to read more? Florian recommends Graham R.G. Hodges’ Anna May Wong: From Laundryman’s Daughter to Hollywood Legend and Anthony B. Chan’s Perpetually Cool: The Many Lives of Anna May Wong

    To finish, here’s Anna May Wong contemplating some goldfish:

    AMW8

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in March.

  • Podcast #19: Constance Barnicoat & Irihapeti Ramsden (1/17/2019)

    This time we have two guest presenters from New Zealand, recorded live at an edition of the Dead Ladies Show presented as part of LitCrawl Wellington, which was produced by Andrew Laking and Claire Mabey of Pirate and Queen. First, renegade historian Jessie Bray Sharpin talks about pioneering mountaineer and journalist Constance Barnicoat. And then we have playwright, poet, broadcaster, book reviewer & theatre critic Maraea Rakuraku telling us about Dr Irihapeti Ramsden, a Māori nurse, writer, educator & anthropologist.

    All put together by producer and presenter Susan Stone in January 2019.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, RadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Acast.

    Show notes

    Here are our two impressive presenters, Jessie Bray Sharpin (left) and Maraea Rakuraku.

    And here’s a photo of Constance to start us off:

    22989 constance barnicoat tyree

    (Nelson Provincial Museum, Tyree Studio Collection: 22989)

    And here’s her rather lamentable death notice:

    cbarnicoatobit

    She does have a mountain (or three) named after her, though, and here’s one of the New Zealand ones looking lovely:

    barnicoat-walkway-4-768x576

    Here’s a link to the second most badass photo ever taken in New Zealand (warning: no dead ladies featured).

    And here’s Constance on the cover of a book, Lady Travellers. The Tourists of Early New Zealand by Bee Dawson:
    cb

    *****

    And now to Irihapeti Ramsden:

    ramsden

    Read an obituary in the New Zealand Herald.

    You can also read the Booker Prize-winning novel The Bone People, by Keri Hulme, which Dr. Ramsden published in the first place as part of the feminist collective Spiral.

    Here’s more about that story. It’s pretty darn impressive.

    Maraea provided us with a little background about Captain Cook, who she speaks about in her talk:

    Indigenous Māori and indeed most of the Pacific, have a conflicted relationship with British Explorer, Captain James Cook (1728-1779) credited (still) with having ‘discovered’, in 1769, populated for centuries by Polynesians – Aotearoa/New Zealand. This voyage and the two that followed, in (1772-1775) and (1776-1779) were precursors to colonisation, that would overwhelm Indigenous less than 70 years later and lead to the signing of The Declaration of Independence in 1835 followed by Te Tiriti o Waitangi (The Treaty of Waitangi) in 1840. These agreements reinforced the sovereignty and rights of the Indigenous peoples, who at the time were the majority peoples. Introduced disease, combined with the systematic economic, social and spiritual dismantling of cultural systems had a devastating impact upon the Indigenous population, which is still felt to this day.

    And here’s a translation of her opening words:

    Through my mother, I am Ngāti Kahungunu ki te Wairoa
    Through my father, Maungapōhatu is my mountain
    Tauranga, is my river
    Ngāti Rere is my hapu,
    Tūhoe is my tribe,
    I am Maraea Rakuraku
    Greetings to you all.

    Our theme music is “Little Lily Swing” by Tri-Tachyon.

    Thanks for listening! We’ll be back with a new episode in February.

  • Podcast #18: Elsa Lanchester (12/12/2018)

    The last part of our 4-part special FRANKENFRAUEN miniseries, produced in December 2018 by Susan Stone.

    In a special encore presentation, Dead Ladies Show co-founder Florian Duijsens tells the story of Elsa Lanchester, the actress made famous by her role in 1935’s Bride of Frankenstein. Recorded live at Bard College Berlin.

    Also available on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, RadioPublic, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Acast.

    Show notes:

    Read more: Podcast #18: Elsa Lanchester

    Here are a few trailers to the movies in which Florian first encountered Elsa:

    Elsa’s mother, Edith Lanchester. Read more about her scandalous cohabitation and activism here.