I love International Women’s Day. (Being a slow academic, I can get away with this post being two days late, right?) It combines exciting bookish announcements – especially the Stella Prize shortlist for Australian women’s writing, which I read every year – and great conversations with daughters:
Explaining #IWD to my 5y.old daughter. “That’s such a good idea mum. So… will it be our day every Wednesday from now on?”
— Claire Golledge (@ms_golledge) March 7, 2017
My fourth grade teacher friend found this under one of her students’ desks. ❤ ❤ ❤ pic.twitter.com/7NSxIa6ujn
— Elly (@SMLXist) March 6, 2017
At my university, we had cupcakes and launched a promising Gender Equity strategy. This image is the strategy with the mentions of man, men or son replaced with pussy hats thanks to the wonderful plugin nomentions:
A high point of the day was a talk from A/Prof Catherine McMahon on academic work and motherhood. This topic is close to my heart, and I enjoyed hearing a public declaration for putting family first, especially during health crises. Catherine described her daughter’s severe asthma attack last year, and her description of an ambulance drive to the children’s hospital with a non-responsive child brought back anxious memories of my own daughter’s ambulance trips.
IWD is a great opportunity to talk about the challenges of combining academic work and care (for children, elders, partners, colleagues and students). Women carry a disproportionate load of care work, emotional labour, housework and service, in and out of the academy. I want to post more on the idea of ‘academic housework’ and its impact on careers. This is important to discuss here because of the emphasis of slow academia on care, kindness and collegiality. But tonight I offer the shortcut of links, many of which I want to revisit myself, and a promise for a future post – right now, I have bedtime stories to read (I highly recommend our current favourite Du Iz Tak?) and children’s heads to smell.