Old Wives’ Tales

(1984) 20-minute radio documentary about a women’s bookstore. Broadcast by KPFA-FM.

Claire Schoen: Producer, recordist/ editor
Fine Line Productions: Executive Producer

Program Summary: Early societies depended on the oral tradition to retain and share knowledge. The term “old wives’ tales” refers to the use of storytelling by elder women to transmit experience and insight, while also denigrating this source of information. Today, the medium of writing has supplanted this ancient form. Yet the large publishing institutions still perceive women’s stories as of secondary importance. A bookstore in San Francisco, called “Old Wives Tales” provides a link for and by women to complete this cycle of communication.