Leigh Ann Wheeler, Journal of Women's History

In June 2011, the Berkshire Conference of Women’s Historians featured “The Down & Dirty Show,” a drag and burlesque show, on the official conference program. After the show, Dickinson College professor Stephanie Gilmore and Journal of Women’s History co-editor Leigh Ann Wheeler heard provocative comments about it, some enthusiastically supportive and others highly critical. Eager to explore these responses and the politics of staging such a show at an academic conference, the pair invited several people to participate in an email conversation for publication in the most recent issue of the journal. Wheeler helps explain the genesis and intention of the project.