"The Personal Is Political" – Are Daytime Talk Shows Feminist?

JVF Conference Papers

Daytime television talk shows are often said to be "pro-women-orientated" or "feminist" because of their strong orientation towards women. With respect to this "from-women-for-women" argument, I will argue that the genre in question is not to be conceived as feminist. I then will turn to the claim that daytime talk shows are political because of their alleged democratic structure. They "give voice" to formerly "speechless" groups and challenge the dominant position of experts in the media by talking about personal experiences of "ordinary people" (lays) publicly. Since "the personal is political" has been the motto of the second women's movement, the question arises whether daytime talk shows are feminist with regard to the fulfillment of this claim. To answer this question properly, a discussion of the notions of "political," "private" and "public" will be necessary...

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