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Gender Studies offers critical lens for interdisciplinary study of SOAS regions

3 May 2013

SOAS Centre for Gender Studies (CGS) hosts a two-day workshop to explore new directions for the discipline.

Dr Ruba Salih, Professor Nadje Al-Ali, Dr Gina Heathcote, Dr Rachel Harrison and Dr Deborah Johnston are among SOAS scholars participating in  ‘Border Crossings: New Directions in the Study of Gender at SOAS’  which takes place at the institution’s central London campus on 10-11 May.

Through a series of panel discussions, the workshop will draw together diverse disciplines and researchers, challenging the division between activism and academia, and insisting on a relationship between theory and praxis.

Topics for discussion include ‘Gendering space, place and time’, ‘Women’s mobilisation, participation and politicisation’ and ‘Border crossing: tension and innovation’.

Chair of the Centre of Gender Studies Dr Ruba Salih highlights the importance of this forum: “By bringing together faculty and students working on gender across the School, ‘Border Crossings’ will showcase the innovative conversation and collaboration taking place at SOAS.”

The workshop is set to demonstrate the wealth of existing scholarship and highlight new avenues of research, thought and action made possible through an inclusive, interdisciplinary and political approach to gender scholarship.  

Dr Salih continued: “Today, gender studies is no longer merely about women. In considering cultural, political, economic and social processes around the globe, the field has moved on to include men and masculinities, as well as sexualities. Gender is about power, about relationships and structures, subjectivities and societies, hierarchies and new modes of exclusion and belonging.”

Member of CGC and organiser of the event, Professor Nadje Al-Ali, added: “In the context of the unique research expertise at SOAS, gender offers an innovative and critical lens to study everyday lives, political and economic transformations, law and development, as well as languages and cultures in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and their diasporas.

“Through engaging with these diverse areas of study in an open workshop forum, presenters and participants will take part in shaping the environment for free thought which rests at the heart of the CGS.  

“It is this commitment to exchange and encounter which sets the SOAS CGS apart, creating a Centre at the forefront of contemporary gender studies and propelling our discipline forward in critical new directions.”

Through the work of the CGS, students and staff at SOAS act across and beyond borders to produce a critical body of gender scholarship focused on Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Border crossings 2

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View the full programme.