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Philosophy & Other Big Ideas

Secret Feminist Agenda

Secret Feminist Agenda is a weekly podcast about the insidious, nefarious, insurgent, and mundane ways we enact our feminism in our daily lives. Hosted by academic and podcaster Hannah McGregor.

0:00 | Aug 30th

With apologies for its tardiness, I present to you the first interview of season four, and this one’s a doozy. I’m talking to rad queer fat genius, sex & relationship coach, and pleasure advocate Dawn Serra about shame, vulnerability, pleasure, bound...Show More

0:00 | Sep 13th

My favourite piece on the culture of academic cool is Lisa Ruddick’s “When Nothing Is Cool,” which was the launching point for my article on podcasting and fandom as examples of “tiny acts of courage in which people say the uncool things.” Want to re...Show More
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0:00 | Aug 9th

A lot of my thinking about relation to place in this episode was inspired by Amy Fung’s book Before I Was a Critic I Was a Human Being, which is working through a lot of these same questions. I also have in mind writer and photographer Hiromi Goto’s ...Show More

0:00 | May 17th

It’s here! The final episode of season three! This episode responds explicitly to Carla Rice’s peer review of season two, specifically this sentence: “Follow-up episodes featuring panels of feminist scholars, educators and activists could have opened...Show More

0:00 | May 10th

It’s the last minisode of season three, and I’m doing some very specific responding to Anna Poletti’s peer review of season two. Specifically, I’m taking up the genre of the anecdote, and the kind of work it does in Secret Feminist Agenda. I’m thinki...Show More

0:00 | May 3rd

Content warning for discussions of cancer and death. This episode is an absolute dream come true: I spent a full hour talking to Sara Ahmed about feminism. Can you believe it??? Our conversation focused on Sara’s most recent book, Living a Feminist L...Show More

0:00 | Apr 26th

This week’s episode continues our mini-cluster on feminist public scholarship by talking about a feminist genre of knowledge-creation that’s new to me: the killjoy survival kit. Want to know what a killjoy survival kit is? Then you should probably li...Show More

0:00 | Apr 19th

This week we’re continuing the mini-arc on feminists who use podcasting for public scholarship, with the brilliant and delightful Ames Hawkins, scholar and artist and podcaster behind Masters of Text (that name tho). This episode seriously pushed for...Show More

0:00 | Apr 12th

Collectively, Kaarina and I are bringing you some ~extremely chill vibes~ today. I’m talking about why we need to embrace the radical potential of podcasting as a medium that has yet to be fully absorbed into the mainstream, but I’m lying on my couch...Show More

0:00 | Apr 5th

This episode is the beginning of a mini-cluster or mini-arc that will conclude season three of Secret Feminist Agenda. The coming episodes will focus on other feminist podcasters and/or public scholars, starting with this week’s incredible guest, Jim...Show More

0:00 | Mar 29th

Content warning for discussions of chronic pain and illness, drug addiction, and cancer. I jokingly tweeted a screenshot of the audio file for this episode with the caption “The telltale shape of a hard-to-record minisode.” I was referring to the lon...Show More

0:00 | Mar 22nd

Hold onto your hats it’s a LIVE EPISODE! This one was recorded at the University of Alberta, as part of the Canadian Literature Centre’s Brown Bag Lunch series. I’m talking to the brilliant Chelsea Vowel, aka âpihtawikosisân. The ostensible topic of ...Show More

0:00 | Mar 15th

This minisode topic is very close to my heart, not just because part of my job is teaching students how to properly cite their sources, but also because I think sound citational politics are both the cornerstone of what’s good about academia and the ...Show More

0:00 | Mar 1st

For this episode I sat down with the brilliant and luminous Zena Sharman to talk about her work as an LGBTQ+ health advocate (seriously click on that link and look at that website, it is a testimony to femme web design and I am in love). We talk abou...Show More

0:00 | Feb 22nd

Oof! This week Kaarina and I are bringing you a minisode with many feelings in it, as we both process difficult aspects of being a human in the world: I’m talking about dealing with criticism, and Kaarina is talking about holding friends accountable ...Show More

0:00 | Feb 15th

Content warning for discussions of police violence. This week I’m talking to journalist and totally-not-a-bot Taylor Crumpton. We talk about how Taylor went from grad student to freelance journalist, how Twitter is a platform for both highlighting ma...Show More

0:00 | Feb 8th

Content warning for a brief discussion of disordered and restrictive eating. In this week’s minisode I’m tackling a topic that I’ve been putting off for approximately two and a half seasons of this podcast: veganism. I talk about why I chose to be a ...Show More

0:00 | Feb 1st

Two and a half years ago, at a Witch, Please meet-up in Cambridge, Massachusetts, I met a rad artist and Harry Potter nerd who offered to tour Marcelle and me around the Wizarding World of Harry Potter if we ever made it down to Florida. A year ago w...Show More

0:00 | Jan 25th

It’s minisode time, and this week I’m picking up some of the threads from last week’s episode plus the peer review for season two plus conversations from my own classroom and pulling them together in either a beautiful tapestry or a tangled knot. Eit...Show More

0:00 | Jan 18th

In this long overdue (and also slightly late) episode, I talk to brilliant musician, writer, artist, and teacher Vivek Shraya about touring difficult books, finding more equitable ways to run your classroom, and the enduring power of the shit sandwic...Show More

0:00 | Jan 11th

Content warning for discussions of racial violence. Happy 2019, you gorgeous humans. I hope everyone got a chance to take some time off and refresh before the calendar reset. I don’t really believe in resolutions, but I do like the way significant da...Show More

0:00 | Dec 21st, 2018

CW for discussions of transphobia and violence. In this, the final episode of 2018, I got to talk to weightlifting pal and femme genius Tara Robertson about her work on diversity and inclusion at Mozilla — and like a million other things, including w...Show More

0:00 | Dec 14th, 2018

IIIIIII’MMMMM SIIIIIICCCKKKKK and hoo boy can you ever hear it in this episode. Sorry for the garbage voice this weeks folks, and also for the very short episode, but for all my whining and rasping, I’m actually delighted to be sharing with you the n...Show More

0:00 | Dec 7th, 2018

Look at this straight up celebrity who totally agreed to talk to me! Amber Nash, the voice of Pam Poovey on Archer and a renowned improviser, joined me to talk about improv and gender, learning how to be body positive from fictional characters, and e...Show More

0:00 | Nov 30th, 2018

FUN FACT November is my least favourite month of the year for all kinds of reasons, and by the end of this month I’m usually pretty worn down and exhausted (this year being no exception, as the quality of my vocal production in this episode demonstra...Show More

0:00 | Nov 23rd, 2018

This week’s episode is the first ever live Secret Feminist Agenda, recorded at the VPL as part of the Vancouver Podcast Festival. Don’t worry though, we all sound great and the sound of laughter/applause really adds something special. I’m considering...Show More

0:00 | Nov 16th, 2018

Okay I obviously don’t normally use this podcast to promote my side hustles but I want very badly to tell you about this project I’ve been working on for the past year and a half, and which launched just yesterday! Refuse: CanLit in Ruins is a collec...Show More

0:00 | Nov 9th, 2018

Content warning for discussions of sexual assault and transphobia. Like so many good things, this episode started one way and ended up another. I invited Clayre to chat about singing, and we ended up talking about community and harm and silence and w...Show More

0:00 | Nov 2nd, 2018

It’s been another rough week, folks! But rather than getting bogged down in despair at the seeming indestructibility of the goddamn patriarchy, I’m think about something that brings me a little bit of hope: the generosity of critique, and the possibi...Show More

0:00 | Oct 26th, 2018

Content warning for discussions of mental health, depression, and infertility. This episode opens with me explaining the entire premise of Secret Feminist Agenda to my long-term collaborator and dear friend Marcelle Kosman, because Marcelle does not ...Show More

0:00 | Oct 19th, 2018

Not quite a content warning but definitely a heads up, that I’m talking a little bit this week about death and grief and apocalyptic despair. But only a little! Mostly I’m talking about the books that have been not just blowing my mind this year, but...Show More

0:00 | Oct 12th, 2018

I am extremely stoked that you get to meet one of my favourite Vancouver-based humans, the extremely brilliant author and podcaster Andrea Warner. We talk about her new book, Buffy Sainte-Marie: The Authorized Biography, as well as the overwhelming w...Show More

0:00 | Oct 5th, 2018

Welcome back! I missed you! I think you’re great! I think this podcast is great! And in keeping with the sheer exhilaration I am experiencing at the beginning of season 3, I’m going to tell you about a movie that holds a very special place in my hear...Show More

0:00 | Aug 24th, 2018

We’re switching things up for this, the final episode of season two. Instead of playing host, this week I’m playing guest, and being interviewed by my brilliant pal Lucia Lorenzi. Also, since this is the end of another season, I’m once more asking yo...Show More

0:00 | Aug 17th, 2018

Get ready, because this is one of those extra-fun minisodes where I’m kind of figuring something out, out loud, as I record, so it’s a bit more like a word collage than a well-wrought urn, but it’s definitely ~20 minutes of me talking so you can’t sa...Show More

0:00 | Aug 10th, 2018

Content warning for some discussion of rape culture and sexual harassment. This week I got to chat with writer, activist, and organizer KaeLyn Rich, who (alongside a dozen other super impressive things) is the author of the new book Girls Resist! A G...Show More

0:00 | Aug 3rd, 2018

This week I’m talking about slowing down within capitalism’s poisonous culture of speed, and how we can make our own slowness sustainable for ourselves and our communities. It’s complicated! It’s probably worth figuring out! Here are some links! Firs...Show More

0:00 | Jul 27th, 2018

It’s hot as heck in Vancouver (and, apparently, most of the world) right now, but in this episode I’m harkening back to cooler days (i.e. May) when the ever-delightful Emily Hoven visited me to talk (and make) sourdough. We chat about the ethics of c...Show More

0:00 | Jul 6th, 2018

Hey! Let’s talk about gentle men (not gentlemen) and how they’re subverting patriarchal expectations of masculinity and creating a wider range of possibilities for masculine-type-folks! Here are some links! First, in praise of tender masculinity Seco...Show More

0:00 | Jun 29th, 2018

We’re getting deep into academic corner this week with academic coach Jennifer Askey. Together we talk about how grad school does or doesn’t prepare you for the work of being a professor (spoiler alert: it doesn’t), the relationship between academic ...Show More

0:00 | Jun 22nd, 2018

Before we get into this week’s topic, I want to make sure you all know that there is an active struggle at the Saskatchewan Legislature right now as Camp: Justice For Our Stolen Children fights to stay in place despite the police attempting to disman...Show More

0:00 | Jun 15th, 2018

Content warning for some discussions of violence. This week I sit down with filmmaker Alba Sotorra to talk about her newest documentary, Commander Arian (shout out to Hot Docs for setting up the interview!). We tackle being a woman documentarian and ...Show More

0:00 | Jun 8th, 2018

When I sat down to record this episode, I was thinking about travel and family visits and how they take a toll on my mental health. I didn’t know that by the time I finished editing it, Doug Ford would have won a conservative majority in Ontario that...Show More

0:00 | Jun 1st, 2018

Content warning for discussions of violence and death. This week I had the tremendous pleasure of sitting down in Regina, Saskatchewan with four of the women at Camp: Justice for Our Stolen Children.  Robyn Pitawanakwat, Richelle Dubois, Satin Denny,...Show More

0:00 | May 25th, 2018

Content warning for discussions of death and family loss. HI IT’S MY BIRTHDAY! Listen, I know a lot of adults don’t like to make, like, a THING out of their birthdays, but I am not one of those adults. Let’s just blame it on my Leo Rising, which like...Show More

0:00 | May 18th, 2018

Content warning for discussions of diet culture, mental health, and suicide. This episode is a real Momentous Occassion for me because I have been a fan of Jes Baker‘s work for YEARS. She was probably the first body positive activist who crossed my r...Show More

0:00 | May 11th, 2018

This episode is late because I am so so tired and couldn’t think of anything to talk about and then Fox cancelled Brooklyn Nine-Nine and my task was clear. Here’s a short article about why people love the show and whether it might be picked up elsewh...Show More

0:00 | May 4th, 2018

We’re officially done the “play” miniseries and so it’s time to put away childish things and focus on Very Serious Topics like Poetry jk poetry is hilarious and this episode is very funny. Join Beni Xiao and Tin Lorica as we talk about poetry and fee...Show More

0:00 | Apr 27th, 2018

I don’t know about you but I’m having a crummy week and I really didn’t feel like recording a minisode and Kaarina suggested that we could just chat about our crummy weeks instead so we did that. We talk about complaining, and cats, and roller derby,...Show More

0:00 | Apr 21st, 2018

This week we’re continuing our “play” series by talking with sex radical, feelings-witch and facilitator Carly Boyce. Carly tells me what play means in kink communities, and then we delve into consent culture, queer family, the relationship between p...Show More

0:00 | Apr 13th, 2018

This episode is just one big content warning. I’m talking about politicizing tragedy, and public mourning, and I touch on a lot of hard things and recent, awful events, including the Humboldt Broncos bus crash, the Quebec City Mosque shooting, the de...Show More

0:00 | Apr 6th, 2018

By popular request, and despite my personal disinclination towards sports, I’m finally talking about roller derby! With none other than brilliant and badass literature-scholar-slash-derby-player Gillian Roberts. After she very patiently explains to m...Show More

0:00 | Mar 30th, 2018

It’s a short one this week folks, but don’t worry, the feelings/minute ratio is exceptionally high. This episode isn’t about playing–not even in the killjoy sense of being about losing. Actually, it’s kind of about being sad, but it’s also about frie...Show More

0:00 | Mar 23rd, 2018

Our series on play continues with a very special episode, requested by our own Kaarina Mikalson. Clare Mulcahy is a scholar and a gentleman, but in her free time she likes to play video games, and more importantly she likes to talk to her friends abo...Show More

0:00 | Mar 16th, 2018

Gosh, first failure and now limits, I’m just a barrel of fucking laughs, aren’t I? Anyway, this week I’m talking/thinking (talk-thinking) (thalking?) about both feeling out my personal limits — in terms of energy, emotional labour, etc. — and feeling...Show More

0:00 | Mar 9th, 2018

To clarify, I’m not claiming that the very brilliant Emily Riddle is bad at poker, but in this conversation we talk about dealing and playing cards, women’s relationship to recreational fun, and the liberating possibilities of being enduringly bad at...Show More

0:00 | Mar 2nd, 2018

This minisode is the beginning of a short thematic arc on play, and like the good feminist killjoy I am, I decided to start it off by talking about failure. Specifically, I want to talk about a brilliant book — The Queer Art of Failure, by Jack Halbe...Show More

0:00 | Feb 23rd, 2018

Content warning for discussions of anti-Indigenous violence and residential schools. This week I’m joined by brilliant Tuscarora writer Alicia Elliott, who generously sat down with me during her time at the University of British Columbia here in Vanc...Show More

0:00 | Feb 16th, 2018

Three guesses what the theme for this week’s minisode is. Seriously, though, we need to talk about fun, and why it can feel so goddamn hard some time, and how it isn’t quite the same thing as self care, and whether there are sustainable ways to build...Show More

0:00 | Feb 9th, 2018

Content warning for references to sexual violence. We’re back with another interview episode, and this week I’m chatting with the smart and cool and smartly cool Baharak Yousefi. We tackle what it means to bring your (whole) self to work, why emotion...Show More

0:00 | Feb 2nd, 2018

GOSH this was a hard episode to record. For serious, I put it off until 9:30 at night and then had to edit these huge long silences out of the recording. This one made me feel really vulnerable, folks, but I wanted to talk to you about some incredibl...Show More

0:00 | Jan 26th, 2018

Recording this episodes was so much fun because Kendra and Sylvie are smart and inspiring and interesting and funny. FEMINISTS ARE THE BEST END OF STORY. Anyway, come hang out and talk about why law school is saturated in oppressive structures and wh...Show More

0:00 | Jan 19th, 2018

Content warning for discussions of sexual violence and depression. HELLO IT’S HERE IT’S SEASON 2! As you’ll hear, we’re undergoing some format shifts in this, our second season, including a new division between minisodes (like this one) and interview...Show More

0:00 | Dec 21st, 2017

Happy Solstice! We’re right in the thick of the holiday season (with the whoop-de-do and hickory dock) and all of the rich complexities of emotional experience that accompany this time of year. So in honour of all of that, Kaarina and I are bringing ...Show More

0:00 | Nov 24th, 2017

DID YOU MISS ME duh of course you did. I’m back temporarily to share with you a talk that I gave in October for SFU’s Open Access Week. This talk delves a little deeper into what I’ve learned about public scholarship from podcasting, and why I think ...Show More

0:00 | Oct 27th, 2017

Welcome to the end of the beginning! By which I mean, it’s time for a wee little break in this here podcast while we sort a few things out, most especially how we’re going to go about peer reviewing it (surprise! this podcast is going to be peer revi...Show More

0:00 | Oct 22nd, 2017

Content warning for sexual violence. Hahaha remember when I wasn’t sick for a second there? I do. Those were the days/lungs. Anyway, I’m here, and I’m a little late but I’m super pumped to bring you my conversation with Eugenia and Toya, the brillian...Show More

0:00 | Oct 13th, 2017

I’m back, babes, and better than ever, or rather, not actively sick any more. And after spending some time talking about sickness and rest (with some reading recommendations below), I’m thrilled to be bringing you my conversation with PhD student and...Show More

0:00 | Sep 29th, 2017

Content warning for depression and suicide. HEY GUESS WHAT there was still so much good stuff leftover from last week’s conversation with the very brilliant Cynara Geissler that I just went ahead and made it a two-parter. In this episode we ask what ...Show More

0:00 | Sep 22nd, 2017

For this episode, I made an extremely fancy vegan charcuterie board and invited the always-immaculate Cynara Geissler over to talk about that thing where we’ll all slowly working ourselves to death in a desperate bid to prove our worth. You know, jus...Show More

0:00 | Sep 15th, 2017

There’s a lot of really great stuff in this episode: a wide range of exciting sounds from Baby Groot, discussions of feminist and academic mothering, and of course some generalized rage directed toward toxic masculinity. Not to mention our illustriou...Show More

0:00 | Sep 8th, 2017

Apologies if I sound a little drunk on the sheer joy of friendship in this episode. I was. Come hang out with me and Erin Wunker — academic, activist, award-winning author, and all-around treasure of a human being — as we talk about the politics of a...Show More

0:00 | Sep 1st, 2017

We’re back, and only a little late, to talk about astrology, witchcraft, poetry, and queer love with the brilliant Adèle Barclay. You’ll probably want to: Read some of Adèle’s work (and buy her book!) Figure out your own rising sign Find out the deta...Show More

0:00 | Aug 25th, 2017

This week I’m joined by authors/witches extraordinaire Jaya Saxena and Jess Zimmerman to talk about their forthcoming book Basic Witches (preorder it here!). If you’re in the New York area, you can head to the launch at The Astoria Bookshop on August...Show More

0:00 | Aug 18th, 2017

Content warning for racial violence and sexual assault. This week I’m joined by my dear friend Leslie Allin. We did our PhDs together, but we actually didn’t get together to discuss white masculinity in Victorian adventure fiction. Leslie is also a W...Show More

0:00 | Aug 11th, 2017

This episode is a first: that is, the first podcast episode I’ve recorded with brilliant scholar and politicker Andrea Hasenbank in which we were both stone cold sober (if you want to know what I’m talking about, give this and this a listen). It’s ch...Show More

0:00 | Aug 4th, 2017

I wanted you to hear this episode so badly that I went and got new cords for my recording set-up AND THEN I upgraded to the “Pro” level of Hindenburg so I could get noise reduction. Just saying. Come hang out with me and Kaarina while we drink wine o...Show More

0:00 | Jul 28th, 2017

This episode is brought to you courtesy of backyard wine and BBQ tacos! Sit in on my conversation with Rebecca Caines and Michelle Stewart, brilliant academics and artists and activists and collaborators from the University of Regina. Our conversatio...Show More

0:00 | Jul 21st, 2017

We’re back, and this time we’re chatting with academic, activist, and artist Lucia Lorenzi about her love for Moana and Maleficent, Twitter as a platform for feminist activism, and why sometimes it’s okay to not be okay. Here’s some conversation-adja...Show More

0:00 | Jul 14th, 2017

It’s here! The first official episode! Join me as I talk cut-creases, deadlifting, and ill-advised teenage atheism with academic and podcaster Xine Yao. If you want more to read/listen to on these topics, here are some suggestions: Check out Virgie T...Show More

0:00 | Jun 29th, 2017

Welcome to Secret Feminist Agenda! Every week* I’ll be interviewing a feminist about how they undermine the cisnormative heteronormative ableist imperialist white supremacist capitalist patriarchy in their own lives. Mostly I just want to talk to ama...Show More