The Violence We Face

In this episode of Academic Aunties, host Dr. Ethel Tungohan talks to Dr. Rebecca Major about the realities of gendered, racialized violence in academia. Dr. Major reflects on her own personal experiences with threats and harassment as an Indigenous scholar, which escalated to involve doxing and cyber harassment. She provides insightful strategies for those undergoing … Read more

Academic Freedom and Palestine

As the staggering death toll in Palestine rises, we talk about the censuring of Palestine solidarity discourse and the weaponization of anti-racism and equity, diversity, and inclusion language to silence and attack activists and scholars calling for peace. Joining Ethel is Dr. Rachel Brown, an activist with Jewish Voice for Peace, and Dr. David McNally, … Read more

What We Need To Know About Gaza

The last few weeks have been devastating. Like many of you, I have been feeling this sense of immobilization, of helplessness, as we witnessed Hamas’s attack in Israel that killed 1,400 civilians and the Israeli state’s  bombing of Gaza that, as of the time of taping in late October 2023, have killed over 8000 Palestinians, … Read more

The Feminist Killjoy Handbook with Sara Ahmed

Sara Ahmed, author, scholar, and one of our feminist heroes joins us to talk about her new book, The Feminist Killjoy Handbook! Sara’s work both as a scholar in the academy working on queer phenomenology, on post coloniality, and on emotions, as well as her work after she left the academy has been an inspiration. … Read more

How’s Your September Going?

We are back to school! So why do we feel so exhausted? On the season 4 premiere Ethel and Nisha listen to some academic aunties audio diaries about how September is going so far. We talk about why there are so many deadlines at this busy time of the year and what we can do … Read more

The Global Scholar

Season 3 finale! We conclude our series on academia in the UK and in Europe with Dr. Kidjie Saguin, an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Amsterdam. In our chat we talk about his experiences moving from the Philippines, to Singapore, to the US and to the Netherlands across his academic journey … Read more

Hostile Environment

Since the end of April, the University and College Union in the UK has been on a marking strike to demand fair pay and working conditions that have deteriorated significantly. This week, we talk to Dr. Lucy Mayblin a Political Sociologist at the University of Sheffield, about what has been happening in UK academia, including … Read more


Yilin Wang is an award winning writer, poet, editor, and translator based in Vancouver, and recently has been passionately working on translating the works of 19th century feminist poet, Qiu Jin. So it came as a bit of a shock when she found out that the British Museum–that big national institution, holder of stolen artifacts, … Read more

Precarity in British Higher Education

Back from a fellowship in the UK, Dr. Ethel Tungohan talks to Dr. Eve Hayes De Kalaf about about cultures of backlash, processes of casualization, structured austerity, and the normalization of cruelty in academia in the UK post-Brexit. And once you’re done listening, check out Dr. Eve Hayes De Kalaf’s new book “Legal Identity, Race … Read more

We Regret To Inform You…

“We regret to inform you…” Five words that academics read a lot. But no matter how many times you see it, it still hurts. On this episode, Dr. Ethel Tungohan is joined by Academic Aunties producer, Dr. Nisha Nath to talk about grant rejections, the feelings of sadness and disappointment that accompany rejection, and why … Read more

The Yale Aunties

After hearing about Bobbi Wilson, a budding 9 year old scientist who was a victim of anti-Black racism, Dr. Ijeoma Opara, a scientist at the Yale School of Public Health, was determined to make sure that her memories of science would not be of her horrible experience. So she mobilized her network of “Yale Aunties” … Read more

Academic Citizenship

For many academics, especially those from global north and western institutions, we take our institutional and national identities for granted. But the reality is that the passports we hold and the institutions we’re a part of shapes how we experience academia. This includes the hurdles that many experience to get visas, and the experiences that … Read more

Relationships and Academia

As we close out February, we’re going to be talking about relationships and academia, specifically with our life partners. One thing we’ve observed is just how challenging it can be for academics and for their partners who have to contend with the limited job opportunities the academic job market provides. What are the negotiations that … Read more


Academia has a way to make us feel ashamed if we’re not thinking about the work 24/7. In this episode we talk to Dr. Genevieve Fuji Johnson and Dr. Harshita Yalamarty about how we are #MoreThanWork, and how our passions, like boxing, or surfing, or Dungeons and Dragons are more than just hobbies. We also … Read more

Perspectives of an International Scholar

In this episode, we talk about another dimension surrounding this taboo of talking about money, and that is the experiences of international students and international scholars, particularly those from countries in what is known as being part of the global south for which western countries impose onerous visa requirements to talk about this. Joining us … Read more

Becoming The Writer You Already Are

With a new year comes new resolutions, and for many, these resolutions inevitably involve writing. There are so many books about how to be a better writer, but none quite like this one. Becoming the Writer You Already Are is a new book by Michelle R. Boyd, who you may know from her Inkwell academic … Read more

Harry and Meghan

A special holiday bonus episode for you! Harry and Meghan on Netflix is THE documentary event of this year. And of course we binged it and and of course we needed to talk about it. Joining us on this episode is Dr. Safia Aidid, an Assistant Professor of History and African Studies at the University … Read more

Wrapping up 2022

2022 is about to come to an end, and with that comes a period of reflection for many of us. How is 2022 for you? How did it compare to 2021 or heaven forbid, to 2020? What lessons from 2022 will you bring with you to 2023?  In today’s episode of Academic Aunties, we will … Read more

Talking About Money

Academics would rather talk about their sex lives than talk about their salaries. So in today’s episode, we talk to Dr. Rebecca Major about one of the biggest taboos in academia: money. We talk about how hard it is for many first-gen academics to make ends meet, and the bougie norms of academia that make … Read more

How do I look?

How we appear, our dress, our hair, our style, how we carry ourselves are all things that we as marginalized academics are being judged against. Do we look the part of the academic? Do we want to? To talk about this we welcome Dr. Nadia Brown, a Professor of Government and the Director of the … Read more