August 2022 Newsletter

Crossed legs on a rock wearing hiking boots and enjoying the  view over the Scottish countryside.

How is it already August again?! Anyone else feeling like time is going much faster between semesters than during teaching? We hope you are all finding some much needed time to rest and recharge ahead of the new academic term starting in September.

There are introductory posts from our new committee members being published on our blog throughout August, so keep an eye out for them!

We’d like to wish all Master students best of luck and lots of energy for the final stretches of dissertation writing! You can do it!

As the Edinburgh Fringe is back this month, comedian Charlotte Anne-Tilley has compiled a map (see graphic below) listing all female and non-binary led work at this year’s festival.

Use this map to find non-binary and female-led shows at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe. This map includes all kinds of shows from comedy to circus. Use it to explore everything that women and non-binary people are doing in the creative world right now! See you in August.
Source: @CharAnneTilley on Twitter

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS/ABSTRACTS/PAPERS/MORE

Queer Form: Scottish Literary Review Special Issue

  • Critical discussion on queer Scottish writers 
  • Abstract deadline: 15th August 2022 
  • More information

Revolutionary Papers: Counter-Institutions, Politics and Cultures of Anti-colonial Periods in the Global South

  • Radical History Review 
  • Issue number 150 scheduled for publication October 2024
  • Abstract deadline: EXTENDED until 15th August 2022
  • More information

Queer Bibliography – Tools, Methods, Practices, Approaches

  • Call for papers for a symposium at Senate House, University of London, 4th February 2023
  • 300 word abstract and a 100 word bio to queerbibliography@gmail.com
  • Abstract deadline: 23rd September 2022
  • More information

Ending Gender-based Violence in Academy

JOBS, AWARDS AND PHD OPPORTUNITIES

SGSSS has compiled a list of current PhD studentships available in the Social Sciences in Scotland. Further UK-wide PhD opportunities can also be found at FindAPhD.com.

Research Fellow (IASH, UoE South Asia)

  • Researcher specialising in British Colonialism relating to Asia to conduct historical research over a two year period
  • Deadline: 3rd August 2022, 5pm
  • More information

Research Fellow (IASH, UoE Links to Slavery)

  • Researcher specialising in Atlantic slavery to conduct historical research over a two year period
  • Deadline: 3rd August 2022, 5pm
  • More information

Post-doctoral Researcher (17 month contract), Maynooth University

  • Department of Media Studies
  • Work on the Horizon Europe project RESIST: Fostering Queer Feminist Intersectional Resistances against Transnational Anti-gender Politics
  • Deadline: 7th August 2022
  • More information

Policy Advisor: Scottish Women’s Convention

Editorial Fellowship at History Workshop Online

Lecturer in Social Sciences (Critical Race and Ethnicity Studies)

Full-time Policy and Parliamentary Manager: Engender

CALLS FOR RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

‘Growing Up Trans’: International study about Trans & Non-binary (TNB) youth experience of gender affirming medical care and well-being

  • Mermaids and Goldsmiths, University of London
  • Participants: TNB youth between 8 and 14 year or parents or caregivers of TNB you wishing to access gender affirming medical care and living in England (UK)
  • Participation: Interviews conducted once a year for 4 years. Two-hour interviews in-person or via video conference (£20 financial compensation)
  • Contact a.carlile@gold.ac.uk or m.davies4@Brighton.ac.uk 
  • More information

LGBTQ+ enterprise in Scotland

  • PhD project, University of Edinburgh
  • Participants: LGBTQ+ people who identify as an entrepreneur, or own or run their own business or social enterprise
  • Participation: Individual interview 1.5 hours in duration, or creative participatory mapping workshop 2 hours in duration, in a group of approx. 5
  • Contact Rowan.Rush-Morgan@ed.ac.uk, @RowanRush
  • More information 

LGBTQ+ Oral History Masters Dissertation

  • University of Glasgow Information Studies
  • Participants: LGBTQ+ people in Edinburgh or Glasgow
  • Participation: interviews about an object to participants, helps prompt memory or emotion, or that tells a story about who participants are, and their experiences
  • Contact Eve Brandon 2562091B@student.gla.ac.uk 

Queer migrations in the UK

  • University of Sussex research project
  • Participants: people who identify as LGBTQI+ and have come to the UK at least 5 years ago
  • Participation: fully confidential, individual interview
  • Participants will receive a £10 as a thank you
  • For more information contact Dr Sarah Scuzzarello ss806@sussex.ac.uk 

Security and policy on university campuses: best practice in equality, diversity, and inclusion

  • Centre of the Dynamics of Ethnicity, University of Manchester, and University of Sheffield 
  • Participants: students who currently study in the UK, or who graduated since 2020
  • Participation: Online survey, 15 mins 
  • More information

The paradox of women’s activism in the Republic of Ireland 1970-1989

  • Researcher: Sarah Golding, Birbeck, University of London
  • Participants needed for a historical research project about women’s experiences in the Republic of Ireland during the 1970s and 1980s
  • Women who were part of the Legion of Mary in the 1970s or 1980s and/or campaigned for lesbian/LGBT rights in the 1970s or 1980s
  • Contact details: sgoldi02@student.bbk.ac.uk

Seminar Speakers, Queer Populations and Policies Network

  • Any social policy/economist/politics/general sociological researchers who are 
  • interested in LGBTQ+ issues and experiences
  • Contact via Twitter @QPaPNetwork

The Poverty Alliance

Get Involved and Stay in Touch with PGRNS

Best Wishes,

PGRNS Organising Committee

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Revisiting Naomi Mitchison’s 1983 novel, Not By Bread Alone

As PGRNS has recently welcomed new committee members, each of them will provide an insight into their current research and interests. In this blog post, Grace revisits Naomi Mitchison’s novel Not By Bread Alone, which forms part of her current research into the speculative fiction of Scottish women writers.

In 1983, at the age of 86, Naomi Mitchison published one of her lesser-known novels Not By Bread Alone. The narrative transports us to a now not-so-distant future, where a powerful multinational corporation is close to producing free food for the entire world.

As a lifelong socialist and feminist, Mitchison draws upon the speculative imaginary to put forward and strategise political concerns which remain uncomfortably pertinent. Her work frequently utilises speculative themes and forms to convey the nature of the feminist struggle (in how it is both felt and fought), across the changing political landscape of the twentieth century.  As activist and writer Walidah Imarisha (2015) writes of speculative fiction:

Whenever we try to envision a world without war, without violence, without prisons, without capitalism, we are engaging in speculative fiction. All organising is science fiction. Organisers and activists dedicate their lives to creating and envisioning another world, or many other worlds – so what better venue for organisers to explore their work than science fiction stories?

Coinciding with the origins of the women’s liberation movement in the 1960s, the publication of Mitchison’s speculative writing both spans and predates the implementation of more ‘progressive’ legislation in Britain throughout the 1970s, including the Equal Pay Act (1970), the Sex Discrimination Act (1975) and the Domestic Violence Act (1976). Enormous technological advancements also parallel her speculative novels, including the birth of Louise Brown in 1978, the world’s first baby to be born after conception by in vitro fertilisation experiment (IVF) and the world’s first successful production of a genetically modified plant in 1983, the same year that Not By Bread Alone was published.

Although not as comfortably science fiction as Mitchison’s earlier novels Memoirs of a Spacewoman (1962) and Solution Three (1975), Not By Bread Alone nevertheless engages with many SF themes. These include the increasing global power of a seemingly evil corporation, the commodification of artificial reproduction (both plant and human) and the threat of ecological and social monocultures. The novel follows a group of scientists spread across continents, working on early GMOs. This research is funded by the multinational PAX corporation, as it seeks to produce a worldwide network of single strain crops. Whilst their ‘Freefood’ policy may at first appear beneficial and benevolent, the genetically modified crops soon start to present major health problems for numerous populations. The PAX Board are unconcerned by such reports:

“The potatoes.” Nobody said anything immediately. They had certainly avoided any symptoms themselves, probably because they were all in a higher income group where potatoes played less part. “We have been fortunate that there have been few deaths – so far.” (p. 125)

Not only are the new crops harmful, but those employed in agricultural sectors are no longer required to work. Large swathes of the population find themselves unemployed and alienated, cast out of the new economic structure imposed by PAX.

Mitchison contrasts the efforts of the PAX Board with the society and culture of ‘an autonomous Aboriginal State in Northern Australia’ named Murngin. The people of Murngin reject the Freefood offered by PAX and value instead a symbiotic connection to their land and the natural world. Kate Macdonald (2015) characterises the ethos and moral imperative of the novel as such: ‘If people do not have a relationship with the land and the food they grow on it, their food is worth less to them, emotionally and psychologically.’ For Mitchison, the agricultural practises of the Murngin community are therefore emblematic of a lasting connection between food production and cultural tradition which undermines notions of scientific ‘advancement’. A PAX scientist sent to survey the potential threat posed by Murngin to the new global Corporatocracy soon begins to appreciate the value of an interconnected and various ecosystem:

According to Rahul […] these people in Murngin State had some sort of relationship with the land which meant a mutual giving and assisting and respecting […] He explained that the people of this part of Australia […] had lived in a continuous eco-system for some fifty thousand years, during which various kinds of understanding had developed with others in the eco-system, both animal and vegetable and with the earth itself. (p. 82)

The more time he spends in Murngin, the more Rahul comes to view PAX as a front for ‘some kind of nasty monopoly’. (p. 150) The intersection between ecofeminism and speculative fiction is central to the novel, laying a framework for Mitchison’s passionate critique of hierarchical power structures. Speculative fiction can help to illustrate what Irene Sanz Alonso (2018) describes as ‘both the oppressive conceptual frameworks that ecofeminists seek to transform, and those of the healthy social systems that it is argued should be established in their place’. The moral and ethical imperatives of the novel acknowledge and interrogate humanity’s failure to recognise or account for ecological crisis. Val Plumwood (1993) summarises this crisis as consequence of humankind’s escalating estrangement from their ‘embeddedness in nature’ over time. Not only is there an absence of an emotional or psychological connection between humanity and the natural world but, as Sanz Alonso makes clear, the histories of oppression to which humans have subjected the environment continue to ‘run in parallel with those suffered by human and nonhuman creatures labelled the other: women, ethnic minorities, children, non-human animals, and nature, among others.’

Pockets of dissent begin to appear across the globe, as former PAX employees learn of the harm (both physical and cultural) caused by the single-strain crops and the news of Murngin’s alternative practise spreads. The PAX board continually denies wrongdoing and attempts to silence such public opposition:

“By the way, Edmund, about that letter which Anne Tomlin wrote to Nature: that can, I trust, be disregarded?” “Unfortunately,” said the Chairman, “they appear to be going to print it. But I have already alerted a couple of good names who will point out the obvious problems and difficulties. I think this too can be contained. Yes, I have no doubt.” (p. 129)

In an echo of Orwellian dystopia, dissenters can be erased, and history easily altered by those who control the narrative. Yet as the novel draws to a close, Mitchison does not leave readers without the possibility of hope. As one scientist asserts: ‘Fuck the Board […] No more PAX […] the sooner we get rid of these buggers the sooner we get on with the job.’ (pp. 150-151)

Yet many more minds must still be changed before any real challenged can be posed. Mitchison takes great care in warning her readers that such a fight will be far from easy: ‘Have we got to die for what we believe in?’ (p. 151) Returning to the novel in the year 2022, almost forty years since its publication, it is overwhelmingly apparent that this fight is far from over. It remains to be seen whether humankind is, even now, prepared to take up Mitchison’s challenge.

A new edition of Not By Bread Alone has recently been published by Kennedy & Boyd, with an introduction by Grace Borland Sinclair.

Grace Borland Sinclair is a PhD researcher at the University of Glasgow, working between the Scottish Literature Department and the Centre for Fantasy and the Fantastic. Her research explores the speculative fiction of Scottish women writers across the twentieth century. (Twitter: @roboticleaf)

Alonso, Irene S., ‘Ecofeminism and Science Fiction: Human-Alien Literary Intersections’, Women’s Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal, 47:1-4 (2018), pp. 216-219.

Brown, Adrienne M. and Imarisha, Walidah (eds.), Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories from Social Justice Movements (Oakland: AK Press, 2015), p. 3.

Browne, Sarah, The Women’s Liberation Movement in Scotland (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2014).

Macdonald, Kate, ‘Eco-dystopian sf curiosity: Naomi Mitchison’s Not By Bread Alone’,  About Writing, Reading and Publishing (2015) <https://katemacdonald.net/2015/10/07/eco-dystopian-sf-curiosity-naomi-mitchisons-not-by-bread-alone/> [accessed 25 February 2022].

Mitchison, Naomi, Not By Bread Alone (Glasgow: Kennedy & Boyd, 2022).

Plumwood, Val, ‘Feminism and Ecofeminism: Beyond the Dualistic Assumptions of Women, Men and Nature’, Society and Nature. 2:1 (1993), p. 97.



Catherine Carswell, Nan Shepherd, and Naomi Mitchison: Women of the Scottish Renaissance

As PGRNS has recently welcomed new committee members, each of them will provide an insight into their current research and interests. In this blog post, Domenico showcases some of the main aspects of his ongoing MLitt thesis on twentieth-century Scottish women’s fiction. 

When one looks at the canonised authors of the modern Scottish Literary Renaissance, they will be highly likely to hear about Hugh MacDiarmid, Edwin Muir, Lewis Grassic Gibbon and George Mackay Brown. Inclined to resolve questions around Scottish national identity, these writers’ works largely re-imagine Scotland’s place both at a local and global level, underlining the role of ‘minority’ languages, myth-building symbolism, and narratives around oppressed cultures. My MLitt dissertation looks back at the writing of Scottish women writers who were initially brushed aside often for the lack of openly nationalist sentiments and more frequently due to their gender. Their work started to be unearthed following waves of feminist research from the 1970s onwards to consider their contribution to women’s writing. Although my research focuses on representations of female sexuality including views on sex, marriage and motherhood, my aim is also to investigate the way these writers relate to international modernisms and the Scottish Renaissance while proposing narrative strategies that effectively subvert patriarchal ideologies and genre conventions. 

Catherine Carswell (1879-1946) was born in Glasgow from a Free Presbyterian family, and although she spent most of her life in England, she still occasionally went back to Scotland or kept in contact with many Scottish writers such as the Muirs, MacDiarmid, ‘Flo’ Marian McNeill, and Mitchison. Despite her first novel Open the Door! (1920) having received more critical acclaim, my first chapter focuses on her second novel, The Camomile (1922), written in epistolary form and collected in the form of a journal. The protagonist, Ellen Carstairs (note the similarity with Catherine’s surname) sends letters to her friend Ruby who lives in London, giving an account of her music and writing practice alongside her rebellious sexual thoughts. Carswell proposes a reworking of the traditional male Künstlerroman, communicating women’s struggle to choose between heteronormative conventions or personal ambitions, and further setting forth the idea of a female artistic tradition that recognises a plurality of women’s voices. 

Nan Shepherd (1893-1981) was born and educated in Aberdeen, where she worked as a lecturer at the Teacher Training College. My second chapter delves into her first novel, The Quarry Wood (1928), a Bildungsroman that follows the maturing of Martha Ironside from her humble rural background in North-East Scotland to her education at Aberdeen University and the first romantic experiences. My argument follows Shepherd’s revision of tropes found in male novels of development such as the protagonist’s autonomous maturing of a unified self by arguing instead that Martha’s identity depends fundamentally on the relations she has with the rural community and her family. Meanwhile, my second chapter considers the ways in which Shepherd relates to the Scottish Renaissance by looking at the transcendence of material and metaphysical boundaries (from Scotland’s physical borders to made-up fantasies around gender roles), and the connection between Martha’s body and the natural world.  

Naomi Mitchison (1897-1999) was born in Edinburgh, initially pursuing a scientific career like her father and elder brother, later dedicating herself to activism and a prolific literary career. Although published much later than Carswell and Shepherd’s novels, my third chapter will consider Mitchison’s Solution Three (1975), a science fiction novel based on a future world where heterosexuality is forbidden, homosexuality is endorsed, and reproduction happens predominantly by cloning. My interest in this novel revolves around the consideration of reproductive technology (artificial insemination, in vitro fertilisation, cloning), medical interventions by a state that advocates for eugenics, and the systematic commodification of women’s bodies, the so-called ‘Clone Mums’. At the same time, I will be able to study the novel’s self-explanatory divergence from heteronormative plots and Mitchison’s feminist vision of utopia/dystopia within SF. 

Domenico Di Rosa is an MLitt student at the University of St Andrews studying Modern and Contemporary Literature and Culture. His thesis looks back at the writing of early twentieth century Scottish women, focusing on their representations of women’s sexuality as well as their rejection and reworking of heteronormative literary conventions. (Twitter handle: @_domenico98)

The dangers of a ‘single story’: One-dimensional responses to a female terrorists

Looking at issues of gender, Cynthia Enloe tells us to ask, ‘where are the women’? This is a question I ask in the context of terrorism, exploring the deep-rooted failures to account for the multifaceted identity of women in the context of political violence. 

Today’s feminist movement is more diverse than ever.  In its bid to achieve equal social, political, and economic rights for women the rigid categorisations of gender which have prevailed for so long are under growing societal and academic scrutiny. To name but a few, Feminism aims to tackles issues such as violence against women, workplace discrimination, and questions dominant social structures which disempower women and marginalised groups. In pushing for freedom from stereotypes, part of the feminist message is one of diversity and the right to free thought and self-expression. Whilst this is widely – and rightfully- regarded as a positive move for women, I argue that we cannot only analyse the positive elements of female identity. What about female violence? 

Applying a feminist curiosity, we see that women are most often identified in non-violent roles. TV licence evasion was the crime for which most females were convicted of in 2019; academics and policy makers routinely discuss women exclusively in the context of auxiliary roles of terrorist organisations; and the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace, and Security only identifies women as victims of violence and well-placed tools to prevent the radicalisation of her family members. But can’t women be violent, too? 

We know that men commit more violent offences than women, with governmental data suggesting that women account for less than 10% of terrorism convictions since 2001. But what about those women who do commit acts of violence? Alexander and Turkington find that women involved in crimes motivated by violent extremism are less likely to be arrested or convicted. But, worryingly, in the instance whereby women are sentenced or plead guilty for terrorism related crimes, they are frequently labelled as naïve, gullible, or victims of violent extremism. What accounts for this? Are women more innocent than men, or are there other forces at play?

This differential treatment is not limited to the criminal justice system. Rather, Cook and Vale find the polarisation of violent men and women is clearly visible across the media whereby portrayals of Islamic State-affiliated women tend to oscillate between “victims taken or duped by their husbands, naive ‘jihadi brides,’ or active security concerns”.  We see this notion in play when comparing the cases of Mina Dich and Safaa Boular, with the former being cast as ‘wicked’ and the latter being ‘groomed’ into committing acts of terrorism. If we relate this to the freedom of expression which is prescribed by feminism, violence committed by women continues to be interpreted in only 2 ways, symptomatic of a lack of imagination regarding the arbitrators of violence. 

Research tells us that female participation in terrorism is growing, with more women filling more roles, in more organisations. We know that women join violent groups for a variety of reasons and, often, perform several roles during their time in the group. CTED notes that, in many cases, ‘the distinction between victims and perpetrators is non-binary, and the degree of the women’s agency, and thus criminal responsibility, is unclear’. What is clear, however, is that the female experience within violence is not as simplistic as has been previously assumed. It is true that women are victims of violence, play a passive role, are groomed to joining, or systematically abused within terrorist organisations, and it is incredibly important to recognise this. But this is not the only truth, and it is dangerous to assume so. Terrorism is not a ‘single story’

These complexities appear to challenge the prevailing one-dimensional, male-centric understanding of violence upon which UK legal institutions are founded. A lack of confidence repatriating terrorist affiliated women from overseas exposes an uncertainty about risk assessment and screening processes; limited understanding of effective rehabilitation and reintegration methods; and uneven prosecution processes for women. Each of these factors are indicative of a reduced understanding of violent female offenders. 

There are debates whether women are becoming more active in terrorism or, attributed to growing numbers of women working in the field of terrorism and counterterrorism, becoming more visible. But, in either case, we cannot rely on feminism to continue to promote the further integration of women into legal positions, counter-terrorism bodies, or governmental security discussions before we consider the full range of roles which women can hold in the context of violence. 

If we ask ‘where are the women?’ here, it becomes clear that whilst they may not always be at the side-lines of violence, women have been primarily marginalised in our analyses. It is not that women are not involved in violent crime; it is that our male dominated political and legal systems are not equipped to understand and respond to these nuances of violence. The repetitive leniency of female offenders in the courts continues to inform implicit biases regarding gendered behavioural expectations and, consequently, hinders effective counterterrorism and radicalisation practices. In doing so, we not only fail to equip legal, governmental, and national security structures to deal with violent female offenders, we also neglect to protect women and girls who are vulnerable to radicalisation- fuelling a cycle of pre and post-radicalisation failures.  

Feminism looks to unlock the potential of women and marginalised groups, questioning social structures which incumber the unequal participation of social groups within wider society. It has not yet expanded to fully consider the complete range of possibilities in regards violence or gendered attributions of justice- there is much more research required to fully investigate these processes. Female violence should not be normalised, but it should be investigated and understood in equal terms to that of male violence. When we are not equipped to recognise women’s violence, we are not able to respond to it. So, where are the women? They need to be at the centre of our analysis.

Chloe Squires is a PhD student at the University of St. Andrews. Her thesis looks at gendered responses to terrorists in the British legal and criminal justice systems. Her research works at the intersection of law, terrorism, agency, and gender, with further interests including de-radicalisation programmes in pre and post-prison spaces, the social construction of terrorism, and gender in C/PVE measures.

You can find Chloe on Twitter @chlosquires

July 2022 Newsletter

Welcome to our July newsletter! We hope you are all enjoying your summer. While things are a bit slower in the academic world this month, we still have plenty events and opportunities to share with you!

Keep an eye on our blog this month for some introductory posts by our committee to find out more about the research being done by PGRN Scotland members!

GENDER EVENTS

** Resources, Seminars, Materials and Events **

Experiencing Intimate Image Abuse in Scotland

  • Glasgow Caledonian University and The Revenge Porn Helpline
  • Free webinar
  • 30th June, 6pm (online)
  • More information

AS IS: A Research Play about Trans, Intersex & LQBTI Activist Relationships

SGSAH International Summer School: Global Connects

  • Scottish Graduate School for Arts & Humanities
  • Workshops open to all students, doctoral researchers, and academics
  • 4th – 8th of July (online)
  • More information

PSA Early Career Network Annual Conference 2022: The Time is Now

Sweat and Salt Water, International Feminist Journal of Politics Pre-Conference Event

  • A conversation on the life and work of Teresia Kieuea Teaiwa’s life and work
  • Participants: Maria Bargh, Cynthia Enloe, April Henderson, Megan H. Mackenzie
  • 6th July, 9pm (online)
  • More information

Village Storytelling Festival: Mirror Mirror in my Hand Exhibition

  • SAY Women: supporting homeless sexually abused young women
  • SaltSpace Glasgow
  • 5th– 10th of July, 11am to 5pm daily
  • More information

Queerious by Birds Eye View: Reclaim the Frame

  • Four film events exploring queer love through a feminist lens
  • Glasgow Film Theatre
  • 6th July- 28th July 
  • More information

Remapping the Feminist Global Conference

  • International Feminist Journal of Politics and Asian Centre for Women’s Studies
  • 21st to 23rd July (hybrid)
  • More information

Advanced Qualitative Data Analysis

  • European Consortium for Political Research Virtual Summer School
  • 25th– Friday 29th July, 11am to 1pm CEST daily (online)
  • More information

Mind the Gap: Postgraduate LGBTQIA+ Research Conference

  • Free online conference
  • In-person networking in London (details TBC)
  • 30th-31st of July, 10:30am to 5:45pm
  • More information

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS/ABSTRACTS/PAPERS/MORE

Queer Form: Scottish Literary Review Special Issue

  • Critical discussion on queer Scottish writers 
  • Abstract deadline: 15th August 2022 
  • More information

Revolutionary Papers: Counter-Institutions, Politics and Cultures of Anticolonial Periods in the Global South

  • Radical History Review 
  • Issue number 150 scheduled for publication October 2024
  • Abstract deadline: EXTENDED until 15th August 2022
  • More information

Call for artwork and poetry: Honour Base Violence

Facing the Abyss: An Epoch of Permanent War and Counterrevolution

  • Historical Materialism London 2022 Conference
  • Particularly interest in contributions on the articulation between imperialism, racism and patriarchy
  • Conference 10th to 13th November in Central London
  • Abstract deadline: 25th July 2022
  • More information

JOBS, AWARDS AND PHD OPPORTUNITIES

SGSSS has compiled a list of current PhD studentships available in the Social Sciences in Scotland. Further UK-wide PhD opportunities can also be found at FindAPhD.com.

Project Worker: Karios Women+

  • Renfrewshire based, 18-hours 
  • Application deadline: 30th June, 6pm
  • More information

Support Worker: Karios Women+

  • Renfrewshire based, 18-hours
  • Application deadline: 30th June, 6pm
  • More information

Global Research Award, University of Strathclyde

  • Faculty of Humanities and Social Science
  • Full tuition fees for International and UK PG research students, 3 years full-time or 6 years part-time study 
  • Start date 1st October 2022
  • Application deadline: 15th July 2022
  • More information

Policy Advisor: Scottish Women’s Convention

CALLS FOR RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

Queer women’s identities in Glasgow from 1980-1999

  • MSc Gender History dissertation, University of Glasgow
  • Participants: open to anyone of any gender identity who identified with the queer women’s community between 1980-1999.
  • Participation: 1–2-hour interviews to take place in July, in person (in Glasgow area) or via Zoom.
  • Contact Alex Lancaster 2701694L@student.gla.ac.uk
  • More information 

‘Growing Up Trans’: International study about Trans & Non-binary (TNB) youth experience of gender affirming medical care and well-being

  • Mermaids and Goldsmiths, University of London
  • Participants: TNB youth between 8 and 14 year or parents or caregivers of TNB you wishing to access gender affirming medical care and living in England (UK)
  • Participation: Interviews conducted once a year for 4 years. Two-hour interviews in-person or via video conference (£20 financial compensation)
  • Contact a.carlile@gold.ac.uk or m.davies4@Brighton.ac.uk 
  • More information

LGBTQ+ enterprise in Scotland

  • PhD project, University of Edinburgh
  • Participants: LGBTQ+ people who identify as an entrepreneur, or own or run their own business or social enterprise
  • Participation: Individual interview 1.5 hours in duration, or creative participatory mapping workshop 2 hours in duration, in a group of approx. 5
  • Contact Rowan.Rush-Morgan@ed.ac.uk, @RowanRush
  • More information 

LGBTQ+ Oral History Masters Dissertation

  • University of Glasgow Information Studies
  • Participants: LGBTQ+ people in Edinburgh or Glasgow
  • Participation: interviews about an object to participants, helps prompt memory or emotion, or that tells a story about who participants are, and their experiences
  • Contact Eve Brandon 2562091B@student.gla.ac.uk 

Queer migrations in the UK

  • University of Sussex research project
  • Participants: people who identify as LGBTQI+ and have come to the UK at least 5 years ago
  • Participation: fully confidential, individual interview
  • Participants will receive a £10 as a thank you
  • For more information contact Dr Sarah Scuzzarello ss806@sussex.ac.u

Security and policy on university campuses: best practice in equality, diversity, and inclusion

  • Centre of the Dynamics of Ethnicity, University of Manchester, and University of Sheffield 
  • Participants: students who currently study in the UK, or who graduated since 2020
  • Participation: Online survey, 15 mins 
  • More information

Get Involved and Stay in Touch with PGRNS

June 2022 Newsletter

A person holding a sign

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Image: Person holding a sign that says, “Let queer refugees in!”

Happy June and Happy Pride Month! We are half-way through 2022 and the academic year has come to an end. While we know many of us will be focused on our research over the next few months, we hope everyone has the opportunity to rest and enjoy themselves ✨

This month, on June 20th, we observe World Refugee Day, a day to honour refugees and build empathy and understanding for their plight. While migration has traditionally been almost entirely ignored by mainstream International Relations, gender researchers have established a strong body of work which highlights the gendered, racialized and sexualised dimensions of migration. Feminist scholars challenge traditional notions of security, arguing that policing borders creates insecurity for marginalised people.

In recent months, fierce criticism in mainstream media for an inadequate response to the unfolding Ukraine refugee crisis, for many, has brought to light the Conservative’s inhumane hostile environment policies, which have violated the human rights of refugees and migrants in the UK for the past decade. With the passage of UK government’s Nationality and Borders Act, which further criminalises migration, undermines international protection of displaced people and allows the citizenship of British nationals to be revoked in an arbitrary manner, the lives and livelihood of refugees and migrants, and all marginalised people in the UK continue to be threatened. LGBTQ+ people will be particularly at risk of having asylum claims rejected under these new laws, as 4 in 5 people who seek asylum through resettlement schemes on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity are rejected. 

At PGRN Scotland, we stand in strong opposition to the UK government’s deliberate and systematic neglect of refugees, and reject the strong anti-migrant rhetoric underpinned by racist colonial stereotypes, so commonly seen in the British mainstream media. The past month marked the year anniversary of the Kenmure Street protests in which community members in Pollokshields, Glasgow, stood with their neighbours and stopped a scheduled Home Office immigration raid. This protest reminds of the important of solidarity with refugees and migrants in our communities against the oppressive immigration and asylum laws.

For more information about how to support refugees in Scotland, please find the following resources below:

  • Scottish Refugee Council: Charity supporting people in need of refugee protection.
  • Refuweegee: Community-led Glasgow based charity which supports forcibly displaced people arriving in Scotland.
  • No Evictions Network: Campaign organising to support people in asylum accommodation in Glasgow against eviction.
  • Edinburgh Anti-Raids: Resisting immigration raids and the hostile environment policy in Edinburgh and Leith.

GENDER EVENTS

** Resources, Seminars, Materials and Events **

genderED Annual Research Showcase

  • Showcase of poster presentations and ‘Doing Gender and Sexualities Research’ roundtable
  • Open to all University of Edinburgh staff and students
  • 31st of May 2022 at 2pm to 4:30pm (online)
  • More information

A Minimum Income Guarantee for Scotland

  • Online workshop organised by organised by International Public Policy Observatory and Policy Scotland
  • 1st June at 2pm to 4pm
  • More information 

Scottish Graduate School of Social Science Summer School 2022

  • Three-day event of advanced skills workshops for PhD students
  • Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh in-person
  • 14th – 16th of June 2022
  • Registration now available, with cost of £80 or £95 with accommodation
  • More information

Equate Scotland Annual Conference: STEM through an Intersectional Lens

  • Three-day event exploring intersecting inequality in Scottish STEM
  • Online conference 
  • 21st – 23rd of June, 10am to 3pm each day
  • More information

The Deep Dive: Judith Butler

  • 5 weekly reading group events exploring the work of Judith Butler by Gender Politics Reading Group, genderED and CRITIQUE, tickets available online 
  • Wednesdays 1st – 29th of June at 12pm
  • In person event @ Chrystal Macmillan Building, University of Edinburgh
  • More information

The Deep Dive Concluding Lecture: Thinking with Butler: Resonances and Reflections

Connecting Knowledge: Queer, Race and Decolonial Theorisation

  • RACE. ED University of Edinburgh, hybrid seminar
  • 8th June 2022, 2pm to 3:30pm
  • More information

Future Leaders Programme: Difficult Conversations

  • In person event, Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh
  • 7th June 2022, 10am to 4pm
  • More information

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS/ABSTRACTS/PAPERS/MORE

Queer Culture Symposium 2022

  • University of Cambridge
  • Open to all undergraduate and postgraduate students working on topics related to queer and trans studies
  • Abstract deadline: 31st May 2022
  • Conference: 20th June 2022
  • More information

ROLES XI: Sexuality & Gender Studies Annual Conference

  • University of Birmingham student-led Sexuality and Gender Studies Network
  • Abstract deadline: 2nd June 2022
  • Conference: 21st June 2022, 10am-4pm
  • More information

5th International Conference on Gender and Sexuality 2022

  • Theme: “Crafting and Imagining an Alternative Gender and Sexuality 2022”
  • Abstract deadline: 16th June 2022
  • Conference: 13th-14th of October 2022
  • More information

Feminists Confront State Violence

  • Radical History Review
  • Issue number 148 scheduled for publication January 2024
  • Abstract deadline: 1st June 2022
  • More information

Revolutionary Papers: Counter-Institutions, Politics and Cultures of Anticolonial Periods in the Global South

  • Radical History Review 
  • Issue number 150 scheduled for publication October 2024
  • Abstract deadline: EXTENDED until 15th August 2022
  • More information

Femspec Journal

  • Peer-reviewed interdisciplinary feminist journal interrogating gender in any genre of speculative arts
  • Fall Issue
  • Abstract deadline: 1st August 2022
  • More information 

JOBS, AWARDS AND PHD OPPORTUNITIES

SGSSS has compiled a list of current PhD studentships available in the Social Sciences in Scotland. Further UK-wide PhD opportunities can also be found at FindAPhD.com.

MRes/MPhil Interdisciplinary Excellence Awards 2022-23

  • 4 MRes or MPhil bursaries covering home postgraduate research student fees
  • Open to both student and supervisor-led projects with collaborations within the arts and humanities, and with social science, science, and engineering.
  • Application deadline: 6th June 2022
  • More information.

Where are the Women of Colour? Addressing Gaps and Silences in Science and Industry Museum Collection

  • Funded PhD (with maintenance grant)
  • University of Leeds, School of Philosophy, Religions and History of Science
  • Application deadline: 30th June 2022
  • More information

Gender and Sexual Politics from Trans-National Perspectives (Poland and Central-Eastern Europe)

  • Fully funded PhD (fees and living stipend)
  • Edinburgh Napier University, Dr Roberto Kulpa
  • Application deadline: 26th June 2022
  • More information

Medieval and Renaissance Women: PhD Placement

  • Six-month funded PhD placement
  • Based at Ancient, Medieval and Early Modern Manuscripts section at the British Library St Pancras, London
  • Application deadline: 13th June 2022
  • More information

Glasgow Medical Humanities Network Early Career Foundation Awards 

  • Small grants of up to £1000 
  • Supports Early Career Researchers in research and knowledge exchange activities that enhance medical humanities in Glasgow, and which offer potential for future development by the applicant. 
  • Application deadline: 20th June 2022 
  • More information

Freelance Research Assistant: Scottish Women’s Budget Group

  • Data collection and collation for project modelling social care costs in Scotland
  • Work expected to take 5-8 days, between 6th of June and 20th of July
  • Application deadline: 1st June 2022
  • More information

Programmes Officer: YWCA Scotland- The Young Women’s Movement

  • Based at YWCA Scotland Glasgow Office with outreach around Glasgow City
  • Application deadline: 17th June 2022
  • More information

CALLS FOR RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

Exploring sexual and gender minorities’ experiences of sexual violence and access to sexual violence support services

  • University of Sheffield PhD project
  • Participants: Providers of sexual violence support; people aged 18+ who belong to a marginalise gender/sex/sexuality group and have experienced sexual assault, harassment, or violence.
  • Participation: Interview conducted via phone or video call.
  • For more information, please contact Holly McSpadden at hmcspadden1@sheffield.ac.uk

The Future of Work: Creating Inclusive Remote and Hybrid Workplaces

  • VMware Women’s Leadership Innovation Lab at Stanford University
  • Participant requirements: women of colour, mothers of young children under age 5 or women who identify as disabled who purposefully wanted to work in a remote role and are currently working remotely, have worked in current remote role for at least 4 months.
  • Participation: 60- 90-minute interview via phone or Zoom.
  • More information

Race, Sexuality, and Desire in Queer Men’s Sexual Lives

  • University of Nottingham PhD project
  • Participants required: queer men of colour, interested in sharing their stories, thoughts, and experiences about race in queer spaces, online dating, and desirability.
  • Participation: flexible, can involve interviews and/or video-diaries
  • For more information please contact Tiago Machado Costa at tiago.machadocosta@nottingham.ac.uk

Get Involved and Stay in Touch with PGRNS

May 2022 Newsletter

May Newsletter 

A warm welcome to May, PGRNS community! This month marks the midpoint between the spring equinox and the summer solstice, promising longer days, and warmer nights (yes, even in Scotland!). We celebrate this change in season with May Day, an ancient festival with its roots in the festival of Flora: the Roman goddess of flowers. Yet, in 1886 May Day was also chosen to represent International Workers’ Day, or Labour Day, to recognise and acknowledge the history of the labour movement, celebrate trade unions and class solidarity, and promote workers rights. This month, PGRNS will be reflecting on the intersection of gender and trade union activism. Women and non-binary people have historically been at the forefront of fighting for workers rights, despite trade unions – and the workplace itself – being considered a traditionally masculine environment. Today, gender and class impact workplace conditions and, when intersected, often exacerbate inequalities. Covid-19 has further widened these inequalities, and as we return to something resembling a “new normal”, it is imperative that  within all industries – including academia – workers rights are protected, maintained and improved in the transition.

GENDER EVENTS

** Resources, Seminars, Materials and Events *

Hufton Reading Group – ‘‘Objectionable, mean and demeaning’: Masculine opposition to vasectomy in Britain in the twentieth century’ 

  • Wednesday 3 May, 3 pm 
  • Georgia Grainger (University of Strathclyde), online 
  • Contact Hufton for link 
  • More information.

‘Hands of Iron: A history of Midwifery in Glasgow’ 

  • Thursday 5 May, 6 pm – 730 pm
  • Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, online tickets 
  • More information

Using Gender, Sex and Sexuality Data for action: In conversation with Dr Kevin Guyan 

  • Thursday 12 May, 6 pm 
  • University College London, in-person and online, tickets
  • More information.

Whose choice, whose rights? Global-historical and intersectional approaches to the emergence of reproductive rights after 1945

  • University of Glasgow
  • Conference registration now available for in-person and online attendance
  • 9-10 June 2022 
  • More information

CALLS FOR CONTRIBUTIONS/ABSTRACTS/PAPERS/MORE

Rewriting Gender in an Age of Transition (1880-1940)

  • A conference at the University of St Andrews
  • Abstract deadline: EXTENDED until 20th May 2022
  • Conference: 16-18th September 2022
  • More information.

Bridges between Disciplines: Gender in STEM and Social Sciences 

  • A conference online and onsite in Valencia (Spain)
  • Abstract deadline: 10th May 2022
  • Conference: 12-16th September 2022
  • More information.

JOBS, AWARDS AND PHD OPPORTUNITIES

SGSSS has compiled a list of current PhD studentships available in the Social Sciences in Scotland. Further UK-wide PhD opportunities can also be found at FindAPhD.com.

Women’s History Scotland PG/ECR bursary 

  • Two awards of up to £300
  • Open to researchers working in women’s and gender history, particularly for those working in Scotland or working on Scottish themes  
  • Deadline 31 May 2022
  • More information.   

Glasgow Medical Humanities Network Early Career Foundation Awards 

  • Small grants of up to £1000 
  • Supports Early Career Researchers in research and knowledge exchange activities that enhance medical humanities in Glasgow, and which offer potential for future development by the applicant. 
  • Application deadline: 20th June 2022 
  • More information.

Lecturer: School of Government and Public Policy, University of Strathclyde

Translating Equalities: Living and Learning Trans* Identities in the UK

Gendered Violence and Restorative Justice

  • Self-funded PhD opportunity, Edinburgh Napier University
  • Applications accepted all year round
  • More information.

CALLS FOR RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

The impact of mental health on justice experienced women living in the community in Scotland, with a focus on stigma, resilience and the burden of public administration

  • PhD research, University of Strathclyde
  • Participant requirements: women aged 18+ who have active justice involvement or some justice experience in the last 2 years and who self-identify as having a low-level mental health concern.
  • Participation: completion of a 7 day diary and follow-up Zoom/in-person interview. Participants will receive a ‘thank you’ gift for taking part.
  • If you would like to take part or would like more information, please contact Karyn on karyn.mabon@strath.ac.uk.

Experiences of Menstruation

  • PhD research, University of Strathclyde
  • Participant requirements: people who menstruate, over the age of 18, living in Scotland.
  • More information.

After the Eighth: Abortion and the Politics of Reproduction in Post-Repeal Ireland

  • PhD research, University of Edinburgh 
  • The study is exploring how the legalisation of abortion has changed things (or not) for people in Ireland – both for those directly involved in abortion provision and politics, and for women and society more widely.
  • Participant requirements: (18+) residents and citizens of Ireland.
  • Participation: 10 min online survey.

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April Newsletter

As the start of Spring signals new beginnings, we would like to welcome our new committee members to our blossoming team – Kirsty, Domenico, Grace, Tanvir, Mia and Charlene. Unfortunately, this means saying goodbye to Laura and Anna who have been on the committee since 2019 but we are excited to see what the new committee will bring. This newsletter is slightly shorter than our usual ones as we go through a period of adjustment whilst our new members settle in. You can find out more about our new members here and look out for updates from us soon as we map out our plans for 2022! 

GENDER EVENTS

** Resources, Seminars, Materials and Events *

Gender-Based Violence: Responding to Intimate Partner Violence and Abuse (FutureLearn course)

  • Expand your understanding of intimate partner violence and abuse (IPVA) and learn how to recognise and support victims of abuse with the University of Glasgow.
  • Online, 4 week course, 4 hours of study per week
  • Start date: 28th March 2022 (you can join late)
  • £11.67/month
  • More information.

CALLS FOR CONTRIBUTIONS/ABSTRACTS/PAPERS/MORE

Rewriting Gender in an Age of Transition (1880-1940)

  • A conference at the University of St Andrews
  • Abstract deadline: 29th April 2022
  • Conference: 16-18th September 2022
  • More information.

Routledge Handbook of Masculinities, Conflict and Peacebuilding

JOBS AND PHD OPPORTUNITIES

SGSSS has compiled a list of current PhD studentships available in the Social Sciences in Scotland. Further UK-wide PhD opportunities can also be found at FindAPhD.com.

Chancellors Fellow in Interdisciplinary Gender Studies, University of Strathclyde 

  • Lecturer/senior lecturer position available
  • Application deadline: 10th April 2022
  • More information.

The Prison Inspection in Scotland: How does this relate to prisoner perceptions of legitimacy?

  • Funded PhD (with annual stipend), University of Dundee
  • Application deadline: 14th April 2022
  • More information.

Understanding the relationship between patient pathways and employment experiences for women managing problematic menstruation

  • Funded PhD (with annual stipend), Heriot Watt University
  • Application deadline: 14th April 2022
  • More information.

Gender, Biometrics, and Embodied Computing: A discursive analysis and design framework for FemTech

  • Funded PhD (with monthly stipend), Coventry University 
  • Application deadline: 14th April 2022
  • More information.

Lecturer/Senior Lecturer: Centre of Women’s Studies, University of York

Lecturer: School of Government and Public Policy, University of Strathclyde

Translating Equalities: Living and Learning Trans* Identities in the UK

Gendered Violence and Restorative Justice

  • Self-funded PhD opportunity, Edinburgh Napier University
  • Applications accepted all year round
  • More information.

CALLS FOR RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

The impact of mental health on justice experienced women living in the community in Scotland, with a focus on stigma, resilience and the burden of public administration

  • PhD research, University of Strathclyde
  • Participant requirements: women aged 18+ who have active justice involvement or some justice experience in the last 2 years and who self-identify as having a low-level mental health concern.
  • Participation: completion of a 7 day diary and follow-up Zoom/in-person interview. Participants will receive a ‘thank you’ gift for taking part.
  • If you would like to take part or would like more information, please contact Karyn on karyn.mabon@strath.ac.uk.

Experiences of Menstruation

  • PhD research, University of Strathclyde
  • Participant requirements: people who menstruate, over the age of 18, living in Scotland.
  • More information.

After the Eighth: Abortion and the Politics of Reproduction in Post-Repeal Ireland

  • PhD research, University of Edinburgh 
  • The study is exploring how the legalisation of abortion has changed things (or not) for people in Ireland – both for those directly involved in abortion provision and politics, and for women and society more widely.
  • Participant requirements: (18+) residents and citizens of Ireland.
  • Participation: 10 min online survey.

Get Involved and Stay in Touch with PGRNS

March Newsletter

Image: #IWD2022

The 8th March is International Women’s Day and this year’s theme “#BreakTheBias” couldn’t be more relevant than it is right now with the Russian military invasion of Ukraine, the eruption of war once again on the European continent and the subsequently developing refugee crisis. As empathy and support for people fleeing the Ukrainian war zone to neighboring European countries is being voiced all over social media, you can’t help but think why similar support all across the societal spectrum wasn’t given to people fleeing from the Middle East and Northeast Africa over the past decades; why widespread solidarity wasn’t as publicly shared with people from those regions whose communities were destroyed and whose families were torn apart by violence, climate catastrophes and economic injustices. Questioning the media narrative of this conflict and showing empathy towards those affected by it most, e.g. civilians, are not mutually exclusive but must go hand in hand.

Here are some of the ways you can help the people of Ukraine: 

As a postgraduate research network we would like to once again reiterate our support and solidarity with the UCU strike happening at our Scottish institutions and all across the country ✊ As students, tutors, research assistants we daily witness the toll precarity, casualisation, impossible workload and uncertainty have on university staff across the spectrum. We stand together in the fight for better working conditions and fair wages ✊

We are also so excited to welcome new committee members this month. Stay tuned to ‘meet’ the new committee soon! 

GENDER EVENTS

** Resources, Seminars, Materials and Events *

Reclaim the Frame at Glasgow Film Theatre 

  • Promoting cinema by women & non-binary filmmakers.
  • HIVE: showing 3rd-4th March (or view online 4th-7th March)
  • ALI & AVA: showing from 14-20th March.

Women’s leadership in climate action: why it’s essential for change

  • Join the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership as Julia Gillard welcomes panelists on the front lines of local, regional and national climate responses to reflect on why women’s leadership is essential for effective climate action.
  • Monday 7th March, 1-2pm, online 
  • More information.

Silence Is Compliance: Sexual Harassment at Work in Scotland

  • Hosted by STUC Women’s Committee
  • Monday 7th March, 6-8pm, online
  • More information.

Book launch: ‘Coercive Control’ by Charlotte Barlow & Sandra Walklate

Break the Bias: Tackling Barriers to Women Playing Sport 

  • Join Fawcett as we explore gender stereotypes in the world of sport.
  • Tuesday 8th March, 4-5pm, online
  • More information

Disrupting Coloniality in the Classroom? Decolonisation, Feminism and Critical Pedagogies

  • Roundtable discussion hosted by CRITIQUE, GenderED and Race.ED
  • Tuesday 8th March, 4-5:30pm, online 
  • More information.

Witches of Scotland: A Campaign for Justice

  • Claire Mitchell and Zoe Venditozzi discuss their campaign for justice and the hugely successful podcast, Witches of Scotland.
  • Tuesday 8th March, 5-6pm, online
  • More information.

To Exist is to Resist: Exploring Black Feminism in Europe

  • Part of IWD, Engender host author Professor Akwugo Emejulu and journalist Assa Samaké-Roman for a conversation about activism, resistance, and how Black feminism and Afrofeminism imagine a Black feminist Europe.
  • Tuesday 8th March, 6-7pm, online
  • More information.

Knowledge Activism: How to Add Scottish Suffrage/ttes to Wikipedia

  • A workshop to celebrate International Women’s Day and #BreakTheBias on Wikipedia by adding and improving entries for Scottish Suffragettes.
  • Tuesday 8th March, 6-8:30pm, online
  • More information.

Inauguration of the photo exhibition ‘Through the Female Gaze: Women and Work in Italy Since the 1950s’

  • Exhibition inauguration (running from 8th March – 30th April)
  • Tuesday 8th March, 6:30-8pm, Italian Cultural Institute (Edinburgh)
  • More information.

Bread and Roses: Gender and Class Under Capitalism

  • Join Andrea D’Atri, camille Barbagallo and Alessandra Mezzadri as they discuss perspectives to dismantle capitalist patriarchy and develop a radical socialist feminism that fihts for the emancipation of women and all humankind.
  • Thursday 10th March, 7pm, online
  • More information.

Gender and Leadership in the European Parliament at Midterm

Women and LGBTQ+ People of Colour in heritage activism in Scotland

  • Presentation by Dr Nathan Iqbal, as part of the Strathclyde Feminist Research Network Series 
  • Wednesday 16th March, 3-4pm, online
  • More information

Realizing gender equality in parliaments: Transforming institutions, delivering for all women and men

  • Organised by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) and the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (OSCE PA)
  • Wednesday 30th March, 9-11am, online 
  • More information.

CALLS FOR CONTRIBUTIONS/ABSTRACTS/PAPERS/MORE

The University of Glasgow Postgraduate Conference: Hear them speak: Voice in literature, culture, and the arts

  • Hybrid conference: 9-10th June 2022
  • Abstract deadline: 14th March 

Gender Politics Reading Group (University of Edinburgh): PhD Showcase

  • Share your PhD research in a friendly, laidback environment with other gender researchers. Open to all PhD candidates whose work broadly focuses on gender.
  • Submit a 200-300 word abstract by 16th March 2022 and a 1,500-3,000 word piece of work by 1st April 2022 for discussion.
  • 13th April 2022 (time, location TBC)
  • Send submissions to genderpolitics@mlist.is.ed.ac.uk.

JOBS AND PHD OPPORTUNITIES

There are a number of PhD studentships available for the next academic year. You can find out more here.

Menstrual issues: social, cultural, and medical

  • Funded PhD (with monthly stipend), University of Aberdeen
  • Application deadline: 31st March 2022
  • More information.

Equal Rights of Access to Environmental Justice in Scotland

  • Funded PhD (with annual stipend), Queen Margaret University (in collaboration with Environmental Rights Centre Scotland)
  • Application deadline: 11th March 2022
  • More information.

Women’s Activism in Peacebuilding Processes: A Comparative Study on the Role of Women in the North and the Niger Delta Conflicts in Nigeria

  • Funded PhD (with monthly stipend), University of Leicester
  • Application deadline: 11th March 2022
  • More information.

The Laura Bassi Scholarship

  • Aiming to provide editorial assistance to postgraduate and junior academics whose research focuses on neglected topics of study, broadly construed.
  • Application deadline: 27th March 2022
  • Results: 20th April 2022
  • More information.

Gender, Biometrics, and Embodied Computing: A discursive analysis and design framework for FemTech

  • Funded PhD (with monthly stipend), Coventry University 
  • Application deadline: 14th April 2022
  • More information.

Gendered Violence and Restorative Justice

  • Self-funded PhD opportunity, Edinburgh Napier University
  • Applications accepted all year round
  • More information.

CALLS FOR RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

The impact of mental health on justice experienced women living in the community in Scotland, with a focus on stigma, resilience and the burden of public administration

  • PhD research, University of Strathclyde
  • Participant requirements: women aged 18+ who have active justice involvement or some justice experience in the last 2 years and who self-identify as having a low-level mental health concern.
  • Participation: completion of a 7 day diary and follow-up Zoom/in-person interview. Participants will receive a ‘thank you’ gift for taking part.
  • If you would like to take part or would like more information, please contact Karyn on karyn.mabon@strath.ac.uk.

The lived experiences of Black Professional Women at work in the UK and USA

  • PhD research, University of Lincoln 
  • Participation: 10 min online survey and/or 60 minute interview.

Experiences of Menstruation

  • PhD research, University of Strathclyde
  • Participant requirements: people who menstruate, over the age of 18, living in Scotland.
  • More information.

After the Eighth: Abortion and the Politics of Reproduction in Post-Repeal Ireland

  • PhD research, University of Edinburgh 
  • The study is exploring how the legalisation of abortion has changed things (or not) for people in Ireland – both for those directly involved in abortion provision and politics, and for women and society more widely.
  • Participant requirements: (18+) residents and citizens of Ireland.
  • Participation: 10 min online survey.

Get Involved and Stay in Touch with PGRNS

  • Follow us on Twitter @PGRNScotland and Instagram @PGRNScot!
  • Email us at PGRNScot@gmail.com to join the mailing list, tell us about an event or CFP, suggest a project, organise a virtual event etc.
  • Join our Facebook group: Postgraduate Gender Research Network of Scotland – it’s a semi-private group so you can find us but you can’t see what’s going on until you’re a member.
  • Subscribe to our blog and let us know if you would like to write a post for us!

Failing to answer: ‘what will you be researching?’

Image is by Noah Buscher on Upsplash.com [https://unsplash.com/photos/M19QtooXPKs]

Christmas break 2021, I travelled back to Ireland full of gusto, ready to answer the question ‘What is your PhD about?’ with confidence and clarity. Emboldened by my bumbling and scrambling for an explanation the year before (Christmas break 2020) when the question made me anxious, ‘Periods. Sociology. Scotland’s free period products. Behaviour during our period. Inequality!’ I would exclaim in a panic to answer the question, listing buzzwords while exposing my internal confusion. 

Three days before we drove back to Scotland, I sat in my aunt’s house, with her, her husband, their three children and my partner. As we were catching up on the year since we’d seen each other last, my aunt asked: ‘What will you be researching?’. I took a breath and thought ‘go on, you said you wouldn’t shy away from proclaiming your research to anyone’, and in the same breath I recalled talking to my aunt about my work on menstruation a few years previous, which had been met with confusion but mostly understanding. Yet in my response, I stumbled, I faltered, my answer concealed my research topic. Immediately I was disappointed with myself, instead of proclaiming my research on periods, I made it small. As we drove away, my partner mentioned that he hadn’t heard me cover over my research so strangely in a long time – I agreed and for a moment, out of sheer frustration at my failure, I cried. Why had I silenced myself?

Back home in Scotland, I reflected, what had made me say that, why did I feel the need to skirt around my research, who was I avoiding being honest with? I thought ‘at least last year the word period was on repeat, albeit incoherently’. I asked myself why in this one situation did I fail, what made this setting different to the rest? I thought through who was there, my aunt, her husband, their 16-year-old daughter, their 13- and 11-year-old sons, and my partner. I imagined one by one answering the question honestly, proudly. Through this exercise, I realised the who and why: my 16-year-old cousin.

As I thought this through, I positioned my failed answer as avoiding two things, it didn’t dredge up a topic that would make her uncomfortable and by avoiding her discomfort didn’t expose her as a person who has a period. I sat with this thought and asked the same questions again – why, what and who. I realised that in the mental re-enactment of my failure, what was really, honestly, happening. At that moment, sitting with my family, during the breath I had taken before answering ‘What will you be researching?’ my 16-year-old self, projected onto my cousin, anxiously urging for discretion said, ‘Don’t bring THAT up’. 

This realisation around my perceived failure, taught me the value of reflection, of sitting in discomfort and asking questions, thinking critically about my own assumptions. But, more importantly, it reminded me of my younger self, the outwardly harsh, internally vulnerable teenager who would have felt exposed if without warning periods were being discussed around the table with my extended family.

So, my failure to be honest, to take up space, to proclaim the importance of removing periods from the shadows, has been an affective experience. As I begin data collection it has reminded me of the previous versions of myself, reminded me that we (mis)remember generously or without generosity at all. It reminded me of my confusion, my want to be independent to be capable of managing my body yet feeling utterly lost as to what to do with independence. At this stage of my research, I continually ask myself, how are my experiences shaping my research, how has my experience brought me to this research? My failure to answer ‘what will you be researching’ has helped to situate my past and present self in the answer to these questions.

Kate Molyneaux is a PhD researcher in the School of Education at the University of Strathclyde. Her current research focuses on menstrual experiences in Scotland.