Wearing, speaking and shouting about sexism: developing arts-based interventions into sexism in the academy

The authors of this paper acknowledge that we live and work on Aboriginal land, and that this work took place in Victoria on the land of the Wurundjeri people and in Queensland on the land of the Turrbal and Jagera people.

Abstract

This paper examines a project that developed humorous, irreverent and subversive arts-based interventions into sexism in the academy. Two workshops were run with women currently working in teacher education in Australian universities. The researchers worked with the participants collaboratively and in line with feminist practices and methodologies to develop interventions that were performed at a large multidisciplinary educational research conference. The paper outlines the origins of the project, the feminist scholarship that inspired it, the methodological framework as well as a discussion about three of the interventions and demonstrates that sexism both (re)produces structural disadvantage for women in higher education as well as being characterised by a set of micro practices that shape the everyday experiences of women in the academy. Although this research is set within an Australian context, the paper acknowledges that sexism is systemic within higher education across contexts.

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Notes

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    Trans* is a general term that is used to encompass the wide variety of gender identities within the gender spectrum.

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Acknowledgements

We would like to acknowledge that this project was funded by an AARE Strategic Initiative Grant (Grant No. 334661/RE-02341). We would also like to acknowledge that the project would not have been possible without the collective participation of and support of women academics across the world who are committed to challenging structural and everyday sexism.

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Correspondence to Emily Gray.

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Gray, E., Knight, L. & Blaise, M. Wearing, speaking and shouting about sexism: developing arts-based interventions into sexism in the academy. Aust. Educ. Res. 45, 585–601 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13384-018-0274-y

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Keywords

  • Art-based research methods
  • Feminism
  • Higher education
  • Academic sexism
  • Feminist interventions
  • Feminist humour