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I Went On Woman’s Hour, But Where Did My She-Hulk Go?!

On 11 November 2016, Mary Moreland and I launched the Heritage Lottery Funded project War Widows’ Stories live on Woman’s Hour. We were given eight star-struck minutes with BBC Radio 4’s Jenni Murray, and you can listen to the result on BBC iPlayer. It’s needless to say I was so excited about being able to do this. It meant our project was given national coverage on Armistice Day, a time when the nation is focused on remembrance of the dead, but often forgets about our duty to take care of those who survive conflict, including veterans and families. From...

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War Widows’ Stories Launches Live on Woman’s Hour on Armistice Day!

On 11 November 2016, Mary Moreland and I launched the Heritage Lottery Funded project War Widows’ Stories live on Woman’s Hour. We were given eight star-struck minutes with BBC Radio 4’s Jenni Murray, and you can listen to the result below via BBC iPlayer. It’s needless to say I was so excited about being able to do this. It meant our project was given national coverage on Armistice Day, a time when the nation is focused on remembrance of the dead, but often forgets about our duty to take care of those who survive conflict, including veterans and...

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[Commentary] Thoughts, Fears, & Brexit

I was invited to write this piece for the Times Higher Education blog, where it was originally published on 26 June 2016 under the title “‘I’m scared’: German academic in the UK on the Brexit vote”. You can read the original post here, and it is reproduced word for word, without alterations, below.  I am an immigrant. Moving to the UK was a dream of mine ever since I can remember. England was, after all, home to bands like The Clash and The Vibrators, and this was as good a reason as any for a teenager to determine that her...

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About My Teaching Materials

The handouts and presentations you find in this section of the blog were devised by me, and I’m happy for you to use and adapt them as you see fit, without crediting me. Of course, it would be great to know if you’ve used any of the materials collated here, and how – if at all – you have adapted them to suit your topic, group, or course. Teaching is about sharing ideas. We all use our experiences as undergraduate students when we devise our seminars and lectures, and many lecturers share their notes and exercises with junior staff....

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[Research] Widows, Weeds, & Victorian Jokes

I knew from the very early stages of my research that, for the Victorians, widows had a lot of tragic as well as comic potential. I don’t think, though, I was prepared to find quite so many widow-related jokes in the pages of periodicals, magazines, and newspapers. As their number increases by the day the more I browse and search, it only seems right to collate them here. So, ladies and gents, be prepared to cry with laughter, chuckle to your heart’s content, or shake your head in disbelief at these pitiful puns and witty lines on which you’re about to feast your eyes at your own peril.

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How Do I Look? When Fear Interferes

This week I got to be in my first ever film: a four-minute epic about Victorian widows, made for BBC Arts as part of the AHRC/ BBC Radio 3 New Generation Thinkers scheme …

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Women On Their Own: Widows in Britain, Now & Then

As part of my role as one of this year’s New Generation Thinkers, I’ve recorded an edition of BBC Radio 3’s The Essay! “Women on Their Own: Widows in Britain, Now & Then” will be broadcast on 11 November 2015 at 10.45PM, and you can listen anytime after this by visiting BBC iPlayer. Please upgrade your browser

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A Confession

I have struggled with mental health most of my adult life. There, I said it. I am a human being, one who has worked all of my life, gained two degrees, has lots of friends, and a good family. Looking in from the outside, I appear to be well-rounded, a tad eccentric, enthusiastic, caring, with a good sense of humour, and relatively intelligent. I work in academia. I teach, train, write, blog, and give various presentations around the UK. Oh, and I suffer from panic disorder, anxiety, and depression. I am one of many. Yet, I spent a...

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Surviving in Silence: Child Sexual Abuse Survivors in Academia

I remember being a young teenager and hesitatingly explaining from my school desk why – uncharacteristically – I hadn’t produced any homework. It was my favourite lesson on a subject that held such fascination for me that it would later become the focus of my academic work. All I could say was that my family had had guests visit the previous evening, and that there just hadn’t been time. My teacher said that I needed to take a long, hard look at my priorities. What I couldn’t say was that one of those family guests had sexually abused me, and that...

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05/07/2017 “Preparing for the Academic Job Market” (University of Birmingham)

Last month I hosted a half-day workshop for PhD researchers at the University of Birmingham in which I discussed the best ways to prepare for the academic job market (without losing your mind, or not finishing your PhD). You can find the full advert for this workshop below as well here. If you would like to host a similar event for your postgraduates, or if you’d like to discuss a different kind of workshop or talk you’d like me to give, please get in touch with me here. Background What it takes to secure an academic job post-PhD...

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10/02/2017 “Social Media for PhD Researchers” (University of Greenwich)

I’m thrilled to to be giving a two-hour workshop on social media to doctoral researchers at the University of Greenwich on 10 February 2017. If you’re interested in having me facilitate a similar training session for your colleagues or students, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me via email, or by leaving a comment on this page. You can find some of my talks on social media in the “Talks” section of this website.  

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From Where You Stand: Stories of Academia

From the day I launched The New Academic in 2012 to the moment I’m writing this post, my website has had 120,000+ visitors, and its number of monthly visitors has reached almost 7,000. It’s not much by some people’s standards, but it’s a whole lot more than I ever thought it would be. Its content has been shaped by 67 guest bloggers, ranging from doctoral students to early-career researchers, senior lecturers, and professors. They have shared stories that range from inspiring and heartwarming to devastating and dispiriting. Their posts reflect on the best and the worst aspects of academia, and of...

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Free Thinking: New Generation Thinkers 2015 Launch at the Hay Festival

I’m very excited to say that I’ve recorded my first ever radio broadcast, and you’ll be able to listen to this edition of BBC Radio 3’s Free Thinking on Thursday, 28 May 2015 at 10PM. This edition of the programme introduces four of this year’s New Generation Thinkers, including me. Please upgrade your browser

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