This spring, Iris Magazine at the Women’s Center continues its popular series by focusing on women in the media. The event, co-sponsored with the Media Studies Society, will take place on Thursday, March 20 from 12 – 1:30 p.m. at OpenGrounds. Lunch will be catered by Take it Away, so guests should come with an appetite! Please RSVP through the Facebook event.

The following panelists will each discuss women who they believe to be serious bad a**es in the media and will then answer questions from audience members.

Professor Siva Vaidhyanathan will stand as moderator for the panel. Current Chair of the Department of Media Studies and Robertson Professor, Vaidhyanathan is a distinguished scholar of intellectual property and its place in contemporary culture. He has authored many books, including The Googlization of Everything and Why We Should Worry, Copyrights and Copywrongs: The Rise of Intellectual Property and How it Threatens Creativity and The Anarchist in the Library: How the Clash between Freedom and Control is Hacking the Real World and Crashing the System. He writes for many periodicals, including American Scholar, the Chronicle of Higher Education, New York Times Magazine and The Nation. Professor Vaidhyanathan earned a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin and spent five years as a professional journalist. You can follow him on Twitter at @sivavaid

Andrea Press is a Professor of Media Studies and Professor of Sociology, as well as previously acted as the Executive Director of the Virginia Film Festival. She arrived at the University of Virginia in 2006 to steer the Media Studies Program to departmental status and begin its graduate program. She is a distinguished scholar on the media audience, on feminist media issues and on media and social class in the United States. She authored Women Watching Television: Gender, Class and Generation In the American Television Experience. Professor Press has published numerous essays, articles and chapters on feminist media theory, social class and the media and media audiences. She received her M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California at Berkley and her B.A. in sociology and anthropology from Bryn Mawr College. To get to know Professor Press even better, check out this Faculty Spotlight!

Allison Wright is an Associate Editor at the Virginia Quarterly Review, the nation’s leading literary quarterly, now in its 90th year of publication. She writes for The Rumpus and The Texas Observer, among other publications. She holds a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. You can follow her on Twitter at  @wrightallison

Jane Friedman is the Web Editor of the Virginia Quarterly Review. She is the co-founder and co-editor of Scratch Magazine, a quarterly publication for writers, all about the intersection of writing and money. Before joining VQR, Jane was the publisher of Writer’s Digest. She has been featured throughout many events and media, including NPR’s Morning Edition, Frankfurt Book Fair and Publisher’s Weekly. She has a special interest in how the digital age is affecting and transforming writers, publishing and storytelling, and frequently speaks about the evolution of the industry. She attended the University of Evansville and earned a B.F.A. in Creative Writing. She completed her M.S. in English at Xavier University, focusing on composition/rhetoric and postmodern literature. Follow her on Twitter @JaneFriedman and check out her site.

We encourage people from every discipline to come out to this event! You don’t need to be a media savant or expert to enjoy the panel’s discussion. Do you have an idea of what it means to be a bad a** woman in the media? Come find out if your idea matches our panelists’. We are seeing more and more women emerge as important players in the media world—help us celebrate them on March 20 with this great event!

In the fall semester, Iris similarly celebrated female athletes and coaches in their “Bad A** Women in Sports” panel. For more on past events related to the series, check out the Iris website.

By Alison Kuhn