Aug 19, 2021 • 41M

Podcast: What Happened to Naomi Wolf?

Jessica Johnson joins to discuss the journey from The Beauty Myth to covid conspiracy theories

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(Photo by Robin Marchant/Getty Images)

On June 4 of this year, Naomi Wolf tweeted: “It seems urgent for public health to separate vaccinated people's urine/feces from general sewage supplies / waterways till studies are done of how MRNA in sewage [and] drinking water will affect [us] all.”

This is the type of nonsensical misinformation that got Wolf kicked off of Twitter. But Wolf wasn’t always a promoter of pseudoscience. Her first book, The Beauty Myth, helped ignite the feminist revival of the 1990s and she’s been an occasionally interesting commentator since then. 

My friend Jessica Johnson (who edits Canada’s The Walrus)  and I have both been Wolf watchers over the years and have talked from time to time about Wolf’s sad descent into conspiracy theories. For the podcast, we decided to compare notes about Wolf and also discuss broader questions about science, trust, and de-platforming. Wolf, for better or worse, is a highly representative figure.

(Podcast produced by Julia Elinore Peterson, post edited by Emily M. Keeler)

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