Welcome back!

Hi everyone!

Welcome back to university! We hope you enjoyed your summer holiday. Sophie and Maria have been busy organising a programme for the new academic year (2016-2017). We are delighted to announce that our autumn programme can now be found on posters near you! We have a huge range of topics from translation, to politics, to film and even to architecture… We are one of the few interdisciplinary networks at Reading and we pride ourselves on encouraging dialogue across disciplines. It’s a great way to form new ideas and think outside the box of your department!

This year our sessions will be on Mondays from 4-5 in HumSS 280.
Our meetings will be around once every two weeks – so do check the programme for exact details… (see our programme page)

We start things off with a talk by our very own Nadia al-Sakkaf from  the department of Politics and International Relations here at Reading

Nadia’s talk is entitled “Illusion of Influence? Yemeni Women in Power” and we’re absolutely thrilled to be starting with such a fantastic (and, on a personal note, feminist!) topic

Here is Nadia’s abstract:

There is a vast disconnect between Yemeni women’s personal reality – ranging from their lack of control over their own bodies to their inability to make choices concerning their marriages, careers – and the so-called political empowerment of a minority female elite. Why haven’t the feminist leaders of Yemen been able to improve the situation of Yemeni women over the last two decades despite their increasing numbers? What gender power bargaining dynamics go on behind closed doors in high level meetings that decide national policies relating to gender equality and women’s empowerment? Using ethnographic research this paper attempts to review the political histories of a number of Yemeni women leaders and through their voices explore the reality of their so-called empowerment as leaders, and the impact, or lack, of their work on the overall progress of Yemeni women. This paper builds on the researcher’s extensive insider knowledge as a native to Yemeni society and uses ethnographic reflexive measures on researching one’s own culture and friends to ensure academic research credibility.

We hope to see you there in your numbers!



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