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

Battling Toxic Productivity

Good things happen but you just can’t enjoy it, and maybe you feel even more anxious. This is a common feeling and is something that this week’s guest, Dr. Ayendy Bonifacio (@AyendyBonifacio) wrote about in a insightful, personal article in Slate. We talk about toxic productivity, celebration as a practice, and how the unique experience … Read more

The Not So Secret Lives of Academic Pets

Many academics have pets. For me, most of my academic life from my postdoc until very recently involved my beloved cat, a long haired Maine Coon named Cornelius, who was my sidekick, my best friend, my confidante. We said goodbye to him on October 4, 2022. So for this episode, I want to honour Cornelius … Read more

Conference Audio Diaries

We’re on the road at the American Political Science Association conference! Producer extraordinaire, Dr. Nisha Nath joins the podcast to discuss Dr. Ethel Tungohan’s audio diaries taken at this incredibly large academic conference. Along the way, they challenge norms, discuss the value of curating your conference and finding community, and provide some interesting tips and … Read more

The Long Road Home with Debra Thompson

Dr. Debra Thompson (@debthompsonphd), talks about her poignant, profound and powerful book, The Long Road Home: On Blackness and Belonging, about her journey back home. She weaves together insights on the politics of race and racialization and Black identity while discussing family history, growing up in Oshawa, and her experiences, in academic spaces in Chicago, … Read more

#AskAnAcademicAuntie: How to Sabbatical

On this bonus episode, it’s host’s prerogative: What do you do on a sabbatical? Dr. Genevieve Fuji-Johnson (@JohnsonFuji) and Dr. Paola Ardiles (@Paola_A_Ardiles) drop a little wisdom to help Ethel make the most of her year. Related Links An Unusual Academic Thanks for listening! Get more information, support the show, and read all the transcripts … Read more

Back to School

Back to school is usually a fun time because it signals new beginnings. But this year it feels different. Confusing and maybe a bit frightening. After two years of the pandemic, there’s this sense of forced normalcy even though the pandemic is certainly not yet over. And what about the extra labour we’ve had to … Read more

The Real Deal with Job Search Committees

In theory, applying for academic jobs seems fairly straightforward. You see the job ad, you put together your application package, you send your application in, and whoever is the most qualified gets the job. In practice, the reality is a lot more complicated. So in this episode, we show you how the sausage is made. … Read more

Say No to Precarious Employment

On this bonus episode of Academic Aunties, we hear from Dr. Vannina Sztainbok, who after working at her department on year-to-year contracts for seven (!) years straight, was let go…right before she would be eligible for permanent employment. Her story is the story of a lot of academics. Say NO to precarious employment in academia … Read more

#AskAnAcademicAuntie: Responding to Reviewers

How do you respond to peer reviews for journal articles? Do you respond to every single reviewer comment? How do you respond to this strategically? On this #AskAnAcademicAuntie we have Dr. Heather Millar (@hlmillar) and Dr. Carmen Ho (@carmenjho_) dispensing a little auntie wisdom. Thanks for listening! Get more information, support the show, and read … Read more

The Ultimate Academic Auntie

Get your elbows up. On this episode, our season 2 finale, we talk to the ultimate academic auntie, Dr. Joyce Green, an emeritus Professor of Politics and International Studies at the University of Regina. Over her three decades in the discipline she has spoken out, lifted us up, and been an inspiration for those of … Read more

Turning Red

We talk about Turning Red, the newest Pixar film, directed by Toronto filmmaker Domee Shi, about a thirteen year old Chinese Canadian girl, Meilin Lee, who finds out that when she gets emotional, she turns into a big, red panda. Meilin also has to navigate life as a middle schooler and all that this entails, … Read more