Feminists Perspectives webinar series

Through a series of 3-4 webinars, we will explore the rich potential of Feminist Perspectives to inform the conceptualisation and design of research in the social sciences. The series aims to stimulate dialogue between researchers of all stages.

About the webinar series

Feminist perspectives have inspired a diverse range of theoretical and methodological innovations in social research over decades. Different forms of feminism have generated new disciplines and sub-disciplines, from women’s studies, masculinities studies and queer studies to feminist security studies and eco-feminism, many of which have emerged from debates and challenges between feminists.

Feminists have led the way in developing philosophical insights, methodological innovations and analytical tools for researching complex social problems, revealing not only their gendered dimensions but multiple intersecting forms of oppression, inequality and dominance underlying and generating them. Feminist thought has historically evolved within the crucible of social movements and has from time to time been challenged, bifurcated, reshaped and reinvigorated within these movements.

Meanwhile feminist perspectives continue to inspire activists and contemporary social movements such as the International Women’s Strike, the #MeToo movement, secondary school students’ exposure of rape culture in their schools, the global anti-street harassment movement and women’s environmental movements (to name just a very few).

Through a series of 3-4 webinars, we will explore the rich potential of Feminist Perspectives to inform the conceptualisation and design of research in the social sciences. Over the course of three webinars, we will invite established academics, activists, early career and doctoral researchers to talk about why they are feminists, the forms of feminism that have inspired their work and, crucially, how feminist analytical perspectives have been productive in the conceptualisation, design and conduct of their research.

The webinar series aims to stimulate dialogue between researchers at various stages of their careers and with different degrees of knowledge and commitment to feminist perspectives. While particularly aimed at doctoral researchers, it is open to academics and non-academics from across different disciplines within and beyond the five institutions that make up the South West Doctoral Training Partnership.


Past Events

Feminist Perspectives and Methodologies – 19 May 2022, 1pm-2.30pm

Taking inspiration from the epistemological and theoretical critiques and developments in feminisms, feminist methods and methodologies are about more than just including women in research or women studying women. This webinar will provide an introduction to the history of feminist methods in concert with the growth of feminist thought. We illustrate both specific methodologies developed in and through feminist thought, and how feminist thought can be brought to bear on other methods and methodologies as well as on other aspects of the research process (e.g., ethics, representation).

Speakers
  • Bryan Clift, Senior Lecturer, Centre for Qualitative Research and Dept for Health, University of Bath
  • Ellie O’Connell, PhD Researcher, School of Education, University of Bristol
  • Jessica Francombe-Webb, Senior Lecturer, Department for Health & Institute for Policy Research (IPR), University of Bath
Below are the references for the four texts mentioned in the session to start your journey in Feminist Methodologies:
  • Harding, S. G. (Ed.). (1987). Feminism and methodology: Social science issues. Indiana University Press.
  • Sprague, J. (2016). Feminist methodologies for critical researchers: Bridging differences. Rowman & Littlefield.
  • Holland, J., & Ramazanoglu, C. (2002). Feminist methodology: challenges and choices. Sage.
  • Jaggar, A. M. (2015). Just methods: An interdisciplinary feminist reader. Routledge. 

Feminist Perspectives and Intersectionality – 8 April 2022, 2pm-3:30pm

For many, Intersectionality should not be considered as a separate feminist topic, but rather as a framework and\or concept that infiltrates all areas of feminist thought and analysis.

This webinar will:

  • Provide an introduction to the history of intersectionality
  • Illustrate how this concept, which was generated from within Black feminist thought, is being developed and put to use today
  • Ask you to consider whether it should it be used by white feminists and others in ways that include factors other than gender and race such as disabilities, sexualities, social class among other questions

Feminist Theories for Contemporary Times – 28 January 2022, 2:30pm-4pm

Gendered inequality, exploitation and violence takes both new and old forms in contemporary times. Three researchers and activists talk about the feminist theories that they draw on in their research.

Sian Norris will talk the insights that socialist feminism brings to her research on reproductive labour and exploitation. Egle Cesnulyte will discuss how sex work positive feminism influence her research on women’s agency and political economy. Jennifer Thomson will consider the co-optation of feminism through the critiques that feminist scholars, such as Nancy Fraser, have raised against neoliberalism.

Speakers:

  • Sian Norris is a writer and journalist focusing on women’s and minority rights. She is the Chief European and Social Affairs reporter at Byline Times. Her book on the far right’s war on reproductive rights will be published by Verso in spring 2023. Her reporting has appeared in the Guardian, the i, openDemocracy, the New Statesman and elsewhere.
  • Egle Cesnulyte is a senior lecturer in Politics and International Development at the University of Bristol.
  • Dr Jennifer Thomson is a senior lecturer in Comparative Politics at the University of Bath.