Alumna Annie Berke '09 Publishes New Book, 'Their Own Best Creations: Women Writers in Postwar Television'

Angeline Dimambro
December 08, 2021

Their Own Best Creations: Women Writers in Postwar Television by alumna Annie Berke '09 will be published in January 2022.

The book, which is part of the Feminist Media Histories series from the University of California Press, is a rich account that combines media-industry history and cultural studies. Their Own Best Creations looks at women writers' contributions to some of the most popular genres of postwar TV: comedy-variety, family sitcom, daytime soap, and suspense anthology. During the 1950s, when the commercial medium of television was still being defined, women writers navigated pressures at work, constructed public personas that reconciled traditional and progressive femininity, and asserted that a woman's point of view was essential to television as an art form. The shows they authored allegorize these professional and personal pressures and articulate a nascent second-wave feminist consciousness. In this book, Berke brings to light the long-forgotten and under-studied stories of these women writers and crucially places them in the historical and contemporary record.

Click here to pre-order your own copy of the book.

A white woman with brown hair and glasses smiling by a window, hand on hip.

Annie Berke is the film editor at the Los Angeles Review of Books. Her scholarship and criticism have been published in Camera ObscuraPublic BooksFeminist Media HistoriesMs, and the Historical Journal of FilmRadio, and Television. She has over eight years experience teaching at the college level and curating film events and was formerly Assistant Professor of Film at Hollins University. Berke earned her PhD in American Studies and Film & Media Studies at Yale University in 2016, and her MA in Film, as well as her BA in English and Creative Writing, from Columbia University, in 2008 and 2007 respectively.