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The Wheeler Centre

Sara Ahmed: On Complaint  /  History, politics & current affairs

What does it mean, and what does it cost, to make a complaint? This question is at the heart of Sara Ahmed’s research into institutional power, and it forms the basis of this energetic, wide-ranging lecture.

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What does it mean, and what does it cost, to make a complaint? This question is at the heart of Sara Ahmed’s research into institutional power, and it forms the basis of this energetic, wide-ranging lecture.

In 2016 the acclaimed British-Australian academic resigned from her prestigious post as Professor of Race and Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths, University of London. Her resignation was in protest against the university’s failure to address the problem of sexual harassment.

Ahmed – whose work embraces feminist, queer and race studies – has since embarked on a new research project, outside institutional academia, that was sparked by the bruising experience of trying to improve the university’s complaints process. Her new study, drawing on oral and written testimony from dozens of complainants, has much to teach us about the structures and mechanisms of institutional power. It’s a timely topic during this moment of reinvigorated feminism and reports of systemic harassment on Australian university campuses.

Here is a collation of my live-tweets from @SaraNAhmed's phenomenal lecture yesterday at the @wheelercentre on complaint: https://t.co/TQokCS1Il0

— Sonia Nair (@son_nair) October 24, 2018

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