46 min

SPECIAL: Florence Robinson, Gerda Lerner, and Women's History at UW-Madison Ask a Historian

    • History

The full show transcript is available on our website: https://history.wisc.edu/ask-a-historian/

In this special episode of Ask a Historian, guest host Tyler A. Lehrer examines how Gerda Lerner—Holocaust survivor, feminist organizer, mother, and distinguished historian—came to establish the pathbreaking PhD Program in Women’s History at the University of Wisconsin—Madison.

As Tyler explains, the history of women’s history at UW-Madison began not in the heyday of the women’s movement of the late 1970s but with the story of Dr. Florence Robinson. In the 1920s, Robinson’s family created the Robinson-Edwards Chair in American History, to be held by a woman historian at UW-Madison. Why did this professorship go unfilled until 1978, when Gerda Lerner arrived at Madison?

Through her archived oral history interviews, Gerda Lerner leads the way as Tyler tells the fascinating story of how Lerner came to Madison, how she realized her ambition to create a women’s history doctoral program, and how her feminist commitments shaped her approach to mentorship, shared governance, and teaching.



Episode links:

This episode was produced and edited by guest host Tyler A. Lehrer, a PhD candidate in Southeast Asian History at the University of Wisconsin—Madison. https://history.wisc.edu/people/lehrer-tyler/

The oral histories in this episode come from the Oral History Program of the University of Wisconsin—Madison Archives. https://www.library.wisc.edu/archives/archives/oral-history-program/

Visit the Program in Gender and Women’s History online here. https://history.wisc.edu/fields-programs-and-working-groups/program-in-gender-and-womens-history/

Musical interludes in the episode are from the track “Dream Softly Baby,” by Lobo Loco. Link: https://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lobo_Loco/Over_Midnight/Dream_Softly_Baby_ID_982. CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license:  https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Do you have an idea for an episode of the podcast? Send your questions for a historian to outreach@history.wisc.edu.

The full show transcript is available on our website: https://history.wisc.edu/ask-a-historian/

In this special episode of Ask a Historian, guest host Tyler A. Lehrer examines how Gerda Lerner—Holocaust survivor, feminist organizer, mother, and distinguished historian—came to establish the pathbreaking PhD Program in Women’s History at the University of Wisconsin—Madison.

As Tyler explains, the history of women’s history at UW-Madison began not in the heyday of the women’s movement of the late 1970s but with the story of Dr. Florence Robinson. In the 1920s, Robinson’s family created the Robinson-Edwards Chair in American History, to be held by a woman historian at UW-Madison. Why did this professorship go unfilled until 1978, when Gerda Lerner arrived at Madison?

Through her archived oral history interviews, Gerda Lerner leads the way as Tyler tells the fascinating story of how Lerner came to Madison, how she realized her ambition to create a women’s history doctoral program, and how her feminist commitments shaped her approach to mentorship, shared governance, and teaching.



Episode links:

This episode was produced and edited by guest host Tyler A. Lehrer, a PhD candidate in Southeast Asian History at the University of Wisconsin—Madison. https://history.wisc.edu/people/lehrer-tyler/

The oral histories in this episode come from the Oral History Program of the University of Wisconsin—Madison Archives. https://www.library.wisc.edu/archives/archives/oral-history-program/

Visit the Program in Gender and Women’s History online here. https://history.wisc.edu/fields-programs-and-working-groups/program-in-gender-and-womens-history/

Musical interludes in the episode are from the track “Dream Softly Baby,” by Lobo Loco. Link: https://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lobo_Loco/Over_Midnight/Dream_Softly_Baby_ID_982. CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license:  https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Do you have an idea for an episode of the podcast? Send your questions for a historian to outreach@history.wisc.edu.

46 min

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