Barely Gettin' By

Barely Gettin' By


Historians, millennials, and friends Dr Emma Shortis and Dr Chloe Ward spend a lot of time getting angry at the way public discussion about history and politics is dominated by the same voices. So they started a podcast.

With the support of RMIT, Emma and Chloe host the Barely Gettin’ By podcast. They talk about a history of the present, for all the big issues of our time: climate change, Trump’s America, intergenerational warfare, white lady feminism, and what it means to live, in the words of Dolly Parton, in a world where ‘it’s all takin’ and no givin’’. 

Emma Shortis and Chloe Ward sitting together

Announcing season two

Barely Getting’ By is back for season two. Again, it’s all about making sense of the present by taking a look at the past as hosts Emma and Chloe delve into the politics and culture of the ‘90s.

This season, Shortis and Ward continue to plumb their knowledge as historians, shedding light on present day events and phenomena with a dive into what Ward describes as the “decade that made us”. 

Listeners can also enjoy an accompanying 1990s Spotify playlist, but it’s not all fun and games as the hosts take a critical look at what has led us to where we are today and explore the concept of living through history, something they never anticipated experiencing. 

Over nine weeks, season two will explore how the politics and culture of the 1990s set us up for today’s catastrophic failures, as well as what is and isn’t considered history.

Episodes cover key events of the ‘90s (give or take), including The End of History and the Cold War, Clinton’s America, Britpop, Blair, the death of Princess Diana, girl power, wars, peace processes, terrorism and 9/11.

Meet the presenters

Dr Emma Shortis is an historian who focuses on US and environmental politics. She’s an in-demand media expert who uses history to try to interpret and explain what on earth is happening in the United States today. She’s a regular guest on ABC News radio and television, and programs like Triple RRR’s Common Sense. Emma joined RMIT University in June 2018. In the year before that, she was a Fox-Zucker International Fellow at Yale University. She holds a PhD in History from the University of Melbourne. She’s a mad Collingwood supporter, an expert Twitter stalker, and spends a lot of time being outraged at the state of things.

Dr Chloe Ward is an historian whose research focuses on the relationship between culture and politics in the 20th century. She has won awards for her research, and is an experienced editor with extensive media training. Before commencing as a Research Fellow at RMIT University she worked in the education industry. She holds a PhD in History from the University of Melbourne, and bitter memories of the 2017 AFL Grand Final. She is a reformed Twitter addict, very bad Instagrammer, and blames her perpetual state of rage on global capitalism and her star sign (Aries).

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