iOS app Android app

Gina Barreca
GET UPDATES FROM Gina Barreca
 
Dr. Gina Barreca, author of It's Not That I'm Bitter: How I Learned to Stop Worrying About Visible Panty Lines and Conquered the World (St. Martin’s), has appeared on 20/20, The Today Show, CNN, the BBC, NPR, Oprah, and Dr. Phil to discuss gender, power, politics, and humor. Her earlier books include the bestselling Babes in Boyland: A Personal History of Coeducation in the Ivy League, and six other books she's written-- in addition to sixteen she's edited. They've been translated into several languages, including Chinese, Spanish, Japanese, and German. In 2013, UPNE will reissue her international bestseller They Used to Call Me Snow White But I Drifted: Women's Strategic Use of Humor.

Gina, whose columns from The Hartford Courant are distributed worldwide by the McClatchy-Tribune Syndicate, is Professor of English and Feminist Theory at the University of Connecticut. Her B.A. is from Dartmouth College, where she was the first woman to be named Alumni Scholar, her M.A. is from Cambridge University, where she was a Reynold's Fellow, and her Ph.D. is from the City University of New York, where she lived close to a good delicatessen. Gina writes regularly for Psychology Today, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and The Huffington Post; she has also written for The New York Times, The Independent, Cosmopolitan, and The Harvard Business Review. She grew up in Brooklyn, now lives with her husband in Connecticut, and has two step-sons who are at that adorable age where they’re attorneys. A new member of the Friars' Club, a "Voices and Visions" honoree of CT Women's Hall of Fame, winner of UConn's most distinguished teaching award, and a keynote at events from The Erma Bombeck Conference, the National Association of Independent Schools, Women In Federal Law Enforcement, The Smithsonian, and The Chicago Humanities Festival, Gina can be found in the Library of Congress or in the make-up aisle of Walgreens.

Visit www.ginabarreca.com for more information.

Entries by Gina Barreca

Worshipping at the Erma Bombeck Altar

(8) Comments | Posted April 18, 2014 | 2:09 PM

The difference between women's humor and men's humor is the difference between revolution and revolt. It's the difference, in other words, between Erma Bombeck and The Three Stooges.

I've worshipped at the Bombeck altar since reading her three-times-per week columns in the...

Read Post

Don't Give Men Guns

(4) Comments | Posted March 3, 2014 | 10:08 AM

When we look at the acts of almost unspeakable gun violence making news and breaking hearts, it doesn't take Rachel Maddow or Wayne LaPierre to target the fact that men are responsible. We don't need to hit the archives for historical documentation. What we need to do is this: We...

Read Post

6 Truths About Relationships Nobody Wants to Admit

(16) Comments | Posted February 27, 2014 | 2:06 PM

You put away the Valentine's candy and put on the Valentine's pounds.

Now it's time to face the six truths about relationships that nobody never admits:

1. When you enter your next relationship, you become the person you split up with. Were you the parsimonious one, always pinching pennies...

Read Post

Why I Love Libraries

(0) Comments | Posted January 26, 2014 | 9:14 PM

I'm in love with libraries. During only one phase of my life -- and an unlikely one at that -- was I ever uncomfortable inside their walls.

In graduate school, when I was spending way too much time in basement rooms with fluorescent bulbs humming and crackling overhead, I silently...

Read Post

Writing In 2014

(0) Comments | Posted December 31, 2013 | 10:33 AM

When I turn over the pages of a calendar for the new year, I feel as if I'm reading a book no one else has ever read.

Who knows where we will be next January? How many of us can remember what we did last year on this date?...

Read Post

The Secret to Surviving the Holidays

(0) Comments | Posted December 19, 2013 | 11:31 AM

The secret to life is that there is no secret. In heaven they ask you to explain all the times you missed an opportunity to find joy.

There is, however, a secret to surviving the holidays, although it has very little to do with heavenly matters.

It has to do...

Read Post

Why State Universities Are Best

(1) Comments | Posted December 11, 2013 | 9:50 AM

Even though later-boomer parents are determined to get their kid into the fanciest school possible, paying huge fees for private coaching and SAT prep, state universities are most usefully serving their students by looking towards the future rather than invoking the past. State universities welcome those for whom success is...

Read Post

Why I Love (and Teach) Author Fay Weldon

(2) Comments | Posted December 3, 2013 | 2:27 PM

With the tightening of budgets, faculty allocations, classroom space, and intellectual perspectives generally, it seems to me that there's more pressure to justify why we teach what we do -- especially for those of us who teach literature. This kind of self-justification takes place both officially and unofficially. One needs...

Read Post

26 Things I'll Be Thankful for (Not Really) on Thanksgiving

(1) Comments | Posted November 17, 2013 | 3:33 PM

--A is for aunts, swarms of, all of whom are explaining how you could have cooked the food just a teensy bit better, but really, what you made is just fine, not to worry.

--B is for brothers, the ones watching televised blood sports throughout the family holiday

--C is...

Read Post

16 Things Men Hate to Hear (Even When They Like or Love Us)

(43) Comments | Posted October 28, 2013 | 2:33 PM

Want to annoy the man in your life both instantly and profoundly? Want to make him wish he lived alone in the Fortress of Solitude or back in the one-room apartment he had when you first met? Say any of these well-known phrases on a regular basis to your husband...

Read Post

16 Things Women Hate to Hear (Even When We Like or Love You)

(432) Comments | Posted October 11, 2013 | 8:57 AM

A convenient checklist of common phrases to avoid when in the company of women (including your wife, mother, sister, girlfriend).

1. Relax.

2. Can't you see that you're just torturing yourself for no reason?

3. Who taught you how to parallel park?

4. If you think it's worth it then...

Read Post

TEDx Talk: The Future of Women's Comedy

(4) Comments | Posted September 30, 2013 | 1:16 PM

The future of women's comedy will be greater than 140 characters.

That was the first point I made at the TEDx Talk I gave last Saturday. Women's comedy takes a long time. Most women's humor is not designed for Twitter.

Why is that? Think about it for...

Read Post

10 Reasons You Should Be Grateful You Dumped or Were Dumped

(5) Comments | Posted August 22, 2013 | 2:46 PM

Here are my Top 10 Reasons You Should Be Grateful You Dumped (or Were Dumped By) Your Bad Betrothed (or Bad Boyfriend) --

1. He taught you that "boredom" is an anagram of "bedroom."

2. He helped you understand the importance of staying away from guys who play the opening...

Read Post

The Rules Girls Are Back -- and More Annoying Than Ever

(4) Comments | Posted July 26, 2013 | 12:54 PM

The Rules Girls are back--and more annoying than ever, at least as far as their remarks
in New York Magazine's recent "Sex" issue goes. Even after Penn satirized them and Teller's program "BullSh&t," they continue to sound like that simply can't stop themselves from...

Read Post

What Happens When Women Tell Rape Jokes?

(29) Comments | Posted June 6, 2013 | 4:28 PM

What happens when women tell rape jokes?

Is it against the rules? Can there even be rules when it comes to something as bizarre as combining the two words "rape" and "joke"?

Let's start with Sarah Silverman, who embodies the shattering of every comedy rule. She appears in...

Read Post

The Loss of a Father

(3) Comments | Posted May 28, 2013 | 11:37 AM

My father, born on Houston Street, was the consummate New Yorker: Never in his life had he been patient.

I fear that patience was not something he learned before he died. I doubt if I'll learn it before my death, either.

Our family never considered patience a virtue. Why...

Read Post

What If You Don't Have a Mom (or Children) on Mother's Day?

(1) Comments | Posted May 10, 2013 | 11:37 AM

My mother died when I was a teenager and, although I have grown step-sons, I have never raised a child of my own.

My mother, who was sick for years and died and when I was 16, hungered for a broader view of the world. She sought a vision of...

Read Post

Will Princeton Replace Match.com and eHarmony?

(4) Comments | Posted April 5, 2013 | 2:55 PM

It's not a dating jungle out there, Mrs. Susan Patton. It's a university.

Has Princeton lost its New Jersey mind? Is Snooki going to write the next letter addressing the deepest needs and ambitions of the women in Princeton classes 2012 through 2016? Or will it be JWoww?...

Read Post

Why Women Need to Have Friends -- For All Times

(1) Comments | Posted March 21, 2013 | 4:56 PM

Everybody believes her own friendships are endowed with a kind of secret significance. When we're with our friends, we believe that we are in extraordinary company. Making us feel rare and prized, our friends capture our imagination and offer us perspective. Appearing almost ghostlike as figures from our past or...

Read Post

50+ Women's Bodies -- From Eden to a Garden

(4) Comments | Posted March 15, 2013 | 1:32 PM

From age 16 to age 20, a woman's body is a temple. From 21 to 49, it's an amusement park. From 50 on, it's a terrarium.

I know this because every morning, I now take a capsule with 4.6 billion strains of supposedly beneficial flora to help establish the equilibrium...

Read Post