The Waves

The “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk” Edition

The Waves on the politics of attraction, nemesis Twitter, and the “boys’ club” of country music.

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On this week’s episode of the Waves, Christina, Marcia, and Nichole are joined by Invisibilia producer Yowei Shaw to discuss her recent piece, “A Very Offensive Rom-Com.” The episode follows an Asian American woman who conducts an experiment after realizing she’s been almost exclusively dating white men. Together, they attempt to unpack the politics of attraction, how online dating has affected our decision-making, and whether we can (or should) try to “hack” our desires. Then, “nemesis Twitter” offers women a way to express their ambitions—but is it a force for good or just further proof of the platform’s toxicity? Finally, a new study and the controversy around Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” have drawn attention to country music’s marginalization of women and people of color. The hosts discuss who’s allowed to test the boundaries of the genre and what that reveals about the fantasy it’s built on.

In Slate Plus: Is it sexist that we reward “fresh faces” in politics?

Other items discussed on the show:

• “A Very Offensive Rom-Com” by Yowei Shaw in NPR
Thirst Aid Kit
• “ ‘Least Desirable’? How Racial Discrimination Plays Out In Online Dating” by Ashley Brown in NPR
• Henry Yu’s Thinking Orientals: Migration, Contact, and Exoticism in Modern America
• Nick Viall’s season of The Bachelor
• “Welcome to Nemesis Twitter, Where Phantom Beefs Run Wild and Free” by Claire Fallon in HuffPost
• “Get Yourself a Nemesis” by Taylor Lorenz in the Atlantic
• “LinkedIn Is Actually the Best Social Network for Self-Loathing” by Shannon Palus and Heather Schwedel in Slate
• “Country Music Excludes Women, Especially Over Age 40, Study Finds” by Anastasia Tsioulcas in NPR
• Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road
• “Lil Nas X’s ‘Old Town Road’ Is a Fascinating Turning Point for Country Music” by Joseph Longon in the Daily Beast
• The Dixie Chicks’ “Goodbye Earl
• Beyoncé’s “Daddy Lessons” feat. the Dixie Chicks
• “Female Country Stars Kacey Musgraves, Cam, Maren Morris and More on Industry Sexism, the ‘Freak Show’ Presidential Election and Tomato-gate” by Jewly Hight in Billboard


Marcia: LaShawn Harris’ Sex Workers, Psychics, and Numbers Runners: Black Women in New York City’s Underground Economy

Nichole: Enid Shomer’s All We Know of Pleasure: Poetic Erotica by Women

Christina: The Decoder Ring episode “Truck Nutz

This podcast was produced by Danielle Hewitt. Our production assistant is Alex Barasch.

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