04 The Importance of Writers to Doctor Who from Gender Diversity in the Who-niverse [Video] (1:04)

Watch this entire presentation: Gender Diversity in the Who-niverse: Paving the Way for a Lady Doctor with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (36:58)

04 The Importance of Writers to Doctor Who from Gender Diversity in the Who-niverse [Video] (1:04)

For her 5th Doctor Who lecture to the CPP community, Dr. Rosanne Welch discusses how society – and the show’s writing staff – prepared the audience for a major change in this 50-year franchise – the creation of the first Lady Doctor!


I come from a writing background, so as far as I am concerned, it’s all down to the writing. Writing Matters. People who are writers, who are the people in our culture who tell us stories, it matters who they are and it matters that we open the doors to people who tell stories from lots of different backgrounds because that’s how we get a plethora of multi-cultural stories that we can share. We should all see ourselves at some point in our lives as heroes because you are the hero in your own life. Unless you take charge and do things, nothing really will happen to you and if you don’t see that media you start to think that somebody else is supposed to take charge. So, I think writing matters. That’s always a theme behind what I do so I am going to start by looking at some of the writers of Doctor Who across the years. It’s always important who invented a thing and our first people are Sydney Newman and Verity Lambert, a woman, a producer not a writer helped to invent the show of Doctor Who. It Anthony Coburn who wrote the first episode and then we’ll go down through the years and see all these guys and what their effect on the show has been leading up to the modern day.

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Dr. Rosanne Welch

Dr. Rosanne Welch teaches the History of Screenwriting and One-Hour Drama for the Stephens College MFA in Screenwriting.

Writing/producing credits include Beverly Hills 90210, Picket Fences, ABCNEWS: Nightline and Touched by an Angel. In 2016 she published the book Why The Monkees Matter: Teenagers, Television and American Pop; co-edited Women in American History: A Social, Political, and Cultural Encyclopedia; and placed “Transmitting Culture Transnationally Via the Characterization of Parents in Police Procedurals” in the New Review of Film and Television Studies. Essays appear in Torchwood Declassified: Investigating Mainstream Cult Television and Doctor Who and Race: An Anthology. Welch serves as Book Reviews editor for Journal of Screenwriting and on the Editorial Advisory Board for Written By magazine, the magazine of the Writers Guild.

Watch Dr. Welch’s talk “The Importance of Having a Female Voice in the Room” at the 2016 TEDxCPP.

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