Tag Archives: women

My Strike Scrapbook by Lucy Robinson aged 48 1/3 yrs

The UCU strike for USS has been a roller coaster and I don’t really know what it means yet, being a historian and all. But the  strike over pensions and the marketization of universities has changed how I understand  our structures and possibilities and how I feel about work, and how I feel about feeling things about work. (But I will leave the truly brilliant Claire Langhamer to take that one on) Its also changed the way academics in different institutions relate to each other, and filled our lives with Twitter.

I’ve never had an overly easy relationship with Universities, or really with education, but over the last few weeks I’ve never felt so completely at home in academia, or wanted to leave academia so much.

I was ‘invited’ to leave school at 15 and allowed to return to sit some O levels, I got 4, not including History.  My first attempt at A levels at 17 was interrupted by the birth of my first daughter. As a single parent I lived in families of choice whilst I studied.  As an undergraduate I had a team of incredible women who had each others backs. With my incredible friend Vicky, we campaigned about the representation of student motherhood in contraceptive education and over the councils refusal to pay our children’s housing benefit contribution over 52 weeks of the year ( it seemed pretty obvious to us that our babies weren’t actually students).

All my post graduate studies were part-time and unfunded. Structurally it was pretty clear that I wasn’t meant to be there, and certainly that I wasn’t worth investing money in. But on a personal level I was surrounded by lecturers and supervisors who invested in me. I was taught about the value of personal and political investment.  And I guess that’s a trajectory I’ve followed ever since. That came to a clashing contradictory conclusion during the strike. I’ve never loved my colleagues more (and I loved them a lot already), I’ve never felt the possibility of taking back the agenda so closely, and I’ve never wanted to jack the whole thing in so much.

 

We did pickets

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We did culture

Posted by Chip Hamer on Thursday, March 1, 2018

We produced our own songbook. 

Some People (Michael Lawrence) were beyond

 

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We made a zine

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Our Students were incredible

But some of them broke our hearts a little bit,

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We did and got Solidarity

 

 

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Daisy Brought Us Chips

 

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Polpo bought us dinner

 

Some of us had been here before

 

There were fund raisers for the strike fund

The Assistants were there

 

There was a shit storm

 

 

There were some genius moves

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There is a crowd sourced legal challenge to the process 

and a strike fund

 

TBC

With thanks to the UCU Sussex organisers and Poets on the Picket Line

Indie Rock-a-Nore

CW: Suicide

This post was originally commissioned by the CIRCY blog. Many thanks to Janet Boddy for all her support. I’m working to develop this into a broader project so thought I’d revisit it for a bit.

The Indie Rock-a Nore Festival was held on 21st October 2017 at the Hastings and St Leonards Angling Association.  It was “[a] one-day indie-pop festival (midday to midnight), bringing together current indie bands and those of yesteryear. Raising money for Brighton based suicide prevention charity, GrassRoots, who provide support across East Sussex (Charity Number: 1149873)”. Alongside the bands there was a raffle, a pool tournament and a buffet.  CIRCY made a small contribution to hosting costs, ensuring that all money taken on the door could go straight to the charity. Over £2500 was raised on the day.

Continue reading Indie Rock-a-Nore

Viv Albertine’s pioneering women (and what happens when we meet our idols)

*Guest post by Laura Cofield*

A moment of pure joy washed over me last Wednesday as I  watched my two favourite feminist icons sit on stage together and chat about pioneering women in music as part of The Odditorium series of events for Brighton Fringe Festival. Viv Albertine, writer, artist and guitarist of The Slits was invited to talk in conversation with Lucy about the women she had come to recognise as influential in her life. It was like ‘grasping at straws’ she described, born in the fifties and with so few women visible in the public eye, let alone pioneering in alternative and subculture.

Continue reading Viv Albertine’s pioneering women (and what happens when we meet our idols)

#emergencydemobrighton

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These are the words I gave at last night’s amazing, angry, joyful, loving, demo against Trump and his muslim ban.  I know most of the thousands of people couldn’t hear what the speakers were saying. Because there were just so many of you there. Your bodies filled the space, soaked up the sound and responded with chants, shouts and woops.  (Note, just because you might think you’ve got the biggest megaphone, doesn’t mean you have. Believe me I know, I’ve tried them all)

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#MoreThanAssistants: Smashing Patriarchy one Doll at a Time

Over the last few months a  new feminist project has been occupying a small group of feminist historians at the University of Sussex.  #MorethanAssistants is inspired by the history of feminist interventions in Historical practice.

We are concerned with

  • The burden of responsibility on those few female figures who manage to earn a space in the public realm.
  • The disproportionate shaming of young women for unruly behaviour.
  • The power of playful, messy, feminism.
  • The importance of carrying our sisterhood with us, whether physically, virtually or emotionally
  • The power of being in the wrong place.

You can hear more about the assistants on this PRBH radio interview from 1.07 to 1.31

Continue reading #MoreThanAssistants: Smashing Patriarchy one Doll at a Time

Top 5 Songs about Sex

I’ve been involved in the Brighton Hub of ‘Sexology and Songwriting’, a collaborative project that brings together academic researchers with songwriters and young people.  The workshops are attached to to Wellcome Collection’s sexology exhibition and inspired by the National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (NATSAL III).   We got some additional funding from the Amy Winehouse Foundation.  The aim of the project is for the young people involved to become active researchers and song-writers, disseminating their research in the form of their own songs, performed locally and potentially included in recorded form at the Sexology exhibition in February 2015. The workshops are based at the Brighton Youth Centre and in the performances will be developed collaboration with Brighton Dome.

Continue reading Top 5 Songs about Sex