Man Repeller launched a new podcast called The Call today. Hosted by former political strategist turned writer and speaker Erica Williams Simon, “the call” refers to the “call on your life” to step up and do something different in the wake of the 2016 presidential election, Simon explained.
“A lot of people who prior to the election didn’t consider themselves activists are now saying that for this to have happened, for Donald Trump to have been elected and for this wave of vitriol and hatred and what I believe to be a”anti-American sentiment to be occurring, we must not have done enough,” Simon said. “I believe a call to action was set forth.”
The sentiment is one that resonates with fans of Man Repeller, Leandra Medine’s fashion and lifestyle site known for its honest, irreverent tone.
“Man Repeller has always been a place to share the conversations we’re having in our daily lives. Since the election, I think many people feel a calling to educate themselves and become more active — myself included. The Call reflects that impetus and this specific moment in time,” Medine said.
The show is a one-on-one interview format with “smart, inspired, successful women” who talk to Simon about their experience and insights into what it means to answer that call. The first installment of the 10-episode series, which was released on iTunes today, features New York Times Magazine writer and cohost of the Times’ podcast “Still Processing” Jenna Wortham.
“She’s kind of an in ‘It’ girl on social media. She’s also so smart. She’s someone who does her work,” Simon said of why Wortham makes for an ideal guest on the inaugural episode. “She’s not an activist or a political figure. She does her work as a writer with a purpose in mind. I think she’s a great example of how to take whatever skill you have in whatever field you’re in and make it have an impact.”
Later episodes will feature female writers, actors and activists such as Roxane Gay, Dream Hampton, Tiffany Dufu, Sally Kohn and Lena Waithe. Conversations cover sexism, career, politics, money, failure and uncertainty.
“I really felt like I wanted to create something that spoke to the current moment but was also evergreen in giving women inspiration for their careers and how to live out their politics. In this moment politically and culturally, a lot of women are feeling an extra push to step up in their lives, whatever that means,” Simon said. “Whether that’s around politics and their activism, or just more generally, what I’ve found is that a lot of women feel like they just want to live their best lives, to use a cliché phrase.”