Loud Murmurs 小声喧哗

S4 E20 The Chair: More broke than woke

September 14, 2021 Loud Murmurs 小声喧哗
Loud Murmurs 小声喧哗
S4 E20 The Chair: More broke than woke
Show Notes

[Episode theme]

We talk about Netflix’s “The Chair” with two female professors, about the show’s portrayal of female allyship, discrimination against faculty of color, the debate over free speech on the American campus, and why we think the show missed the mark. 


2:00 Our first impression of the show

3:40 What is it like to be a mother and a college professor in the show vs IRL

6:20 In just six episodes, this show attempts to capture the complexity of contemporary U.S. campus politics 

10:30 Our issues: an over-simplistic portrayal of students demands, an unrealistic solution to Yaz’s stalling career 

13:20 Anachronism in the plotline: some depictions are outdated

18:30 Entering one room filled with whiteness — our PTSD and imposter syndrome

24:45 Why is Bill the most authentic, and the fullest character in a show about Ji-yoon? Why do we keep loving and forgiving “Bills”?

29:05 Ji-Yoon obsession with perfectionism and assimilation reveals our society’s double standard towards scholars of color 

34:30 Ji-Yoon and Bill’s on-screen chemistry, and real-life examples 

39:40 Allyship between female professors in universities 

41:50 Joan’s conflicted relationship with feminism 

56:25 The cruel, blatant ageism in the show  

1:01:10 The role of university administration in the show vs. IRL


Afra & Juan Qian

[Guest introduction]

Yuan Yuan: Recently graduated from Yale with her Ph.D in philosophy, now teaches at NYU-Shanghai

Eileen Chow: Associate Professor of the Practice in Chinese and Japanese Cultural Studies at Duke University

[Audio editor]


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