Highlighted AHRC CHASE Training Opportunities

The following training opportunities are open to all Arts and Humanities PhD students at Birkbeck.

CHASE Feminist Network Small Project:
Love, Care and Mutual Aid: Resisting State Reliance and State Violence
06 May – 10 June 2021 | Online

*Open to women doctoral students only

In light of the state responses to Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry, and more recently, Sarah Everard, and the subsequent (gendered) violence towards protestors and students in the University, this project will provide a space to talk about these experiences which many of us live through and are impacted by vicariously. The project will run once every week consecutively and will be guided by a theme (see below) which will hopefully lend to fruitful discussions of how we can support one another through direct action.

Session 1 | Thursday 6th May 2021| 17:30-19:00
Online Connection: Introductory Talk, Domestic Violence and Mutual Aid and Networking
Presenter: Baljit Kaur (She/Her – Doctoral Researcher at University of Sussex)


Session 2 | Thursday 13th May 2021| 17:30-19:00
Decolonising the University and Beyond | Care, Inclusion and Anti-Racism in Community Projects
Presenter: Nadia Buyse (She/Her – Doctoral Researcher at University of Sussex, Community Artist and Curator at ONCA).

Session 3 | Thursday 20th May 2021 | 17:30-19:00
State Violence against Migrants and Refugees and the Hostile Environment | The impact of Covid-19 on Vulnerable Women and Sex Workers
Presenters: Sam Pointon (She/Her – Doctoral Researcher at the University of Essex (2022)) and Aimée Lee (She/Her – Social and Housing Care Professional and Activist)

Session 4 | Thursday 27th May 2021 | 17:30-19:00

Consent, Gender and Early Years Education
Presenter: Dr. Jade Lee (She/Her – CHASE and SOAS University alumna and Director of Aurora Learning).

Session 5 | Thursday 3rd June 2021| 17:30-19:00
Defund/Abolish the Police: Resisting State Reliance and State Violence
Presenters: Kate Meakin (She/They – Doctoral Researcher at the University of Sussex).

Session 6 | Thursday 10th June 2021| 17:30-19:00

Creative Performances/Expressions: Celebrating the Collective

Presenters: Baljit Kaur, Sam Pointon and Dr. Jade Lee.

Register here

Coming up in CHASE Essentials

Having a Back Up Plan

Monday 28 June | 14:00-1530 | Online

This 1.5-hour participative workshop from how2glu will help you to identify key outcomes and objectives of your research and map out realistic and achievable alternative routes to achieving them. In this way you will be able to interrogate options and create a ‘back up plan’ should you need one in the future.

Our focus will be on how you could re-plan activities that will achieve those intended outcomes and explore problem-solving skills and flexible approaches that will help you adapt to change.

This workshop is aimed at those at the beginning of their PhD.

Register here

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Developing a Plan B

Tuesday 29 June | 1400-1615 | Online

This 2.15-hour participative workshop from how2glu will help you to identify key outcomes and objectives of your research and map out realistic and achievable alternative routes to achieving them. In this way you will be able to interrogate options and create a ‘back up plan’ should you need one in the future.

Our focus will be on how you could re-plan activities that will achieve those intended outcomes and explore problem-solving skills and flexible approaches that will help you adapt to change.

This workshop is designed for doctoral researchers beyond the first year of their study. Not suitable for those who have just started.

Register here

See full CHASE Essentials programme

2020 Annual Cumberland Lodge Dialogue, Arts and the Union (Online)

6pm on Thursday 5 November.

Birkbeck students and staff are invited to join the virtual audience for the 2020 annual Cumberland Lodge Dialogue, Arts and the Union, taking place on Zoom from 6pm on Thursday 5 November.

In partnership with Goodenough College, London, this public panel discussion examines the cultural bonds that unite the UK’s four nations and the role that the arts can play in building social cohesion across the British Isles. The panellists will explore topics such as: how national identities are expressed within the rich artistic heritage of the UK; the role of the arts in building bridges within and across communities; and how the power of the arts might be harnessed to bring the four nations closer together.

Screen Studies Research in a Pandemic

Annual Postgraduate Training Event by the UoL Screen Studies Group, co-funded by CHASE and LAHP

23rd and 24th October & 20th November

Day 1: Friday 23 October, 14:00-20:00

Day 2: Saturday 24 October, 10:00-13:00

Day 3: Friday 20 November 14:00-17:00

Register on Eventbrite

Teaching Creative Writing

Image by Fred Merchán, taken from Flikr and used under Creative Commons licence

Creative writers teach in schools, universities and the community, on retreats, in theatres and in workshops. Teaching is often a key part of a writer’s career, and there are rich possibilities creative arts education across a huge range of contexts. But how do you teach creative writing? Can you? This series offers anyone considering teaching creative writing as part of their career development the opportunity to look in detail at the theory and practice of creative writing pedagogy in a variety of institutional and community settings.

The series will address the historical principles and contemporary critiques of creative writing pedagogy, and how these are responding to wider institutional and societal developments. It will consider in detail the theory and practice of employing these pedagogical skills both within and outside higher education. Attendees will be invited to reflect on future possibilities and challenges for the development of creative writing teaching, enabling a deeper awareness and knowledge of creative writing as a subject of study, a future career, and a creative practice.

Students are not expected to attend all the sessions, but the series has been designed to allow for an arc of learning from theoretical principles to practical engagement.

The sessions will take place online via Microsoft Teams, once a month for the 2020/21 academic year.

You can sign up for individual sessions using the links below:

13 October | 1100-1200 | Creative writing pedagogy: past, present and future

25 November | 1430-1745 | Pedagogy in practice: fiction, non-fiction, poetry, screenwriting

3 December | 1100-1230 | Can you teach creative writing? Theory and practice of the creative writing workshop

19 January 2021 | 1100-1230 | Decolonisation and inclusivity in creative writing

9 February 2021 | 1100-1230 | Show don’t tell: feminist pedagogy in the creative writing classroom

9 March 2021 | 1100-1230 | Writing in the Community

Solace in the Cracks: Drawing Weeds Ecology, Art History, Practice – a Material Witness Zoom Webinar

Friday 19 June 2020, 3-5pm

Scourges of gardeners, foes of council workers armed with tanks of glyphosate, trampled, neglected, ignored: weeds are despised, yet they flourish, succeeding where other plants fail. Tracing its etymology from Old through Middle to Modern English, the OED defines a weed as ‘Any herbaceous plant not valued for its usefulness or beauty, or regarded as a nuisance in the place where it is growing.’ Gardeners generally consider plants that grow where they are unwanted to be weeds, however much they are appreciated by the insect community.

Material Witness normally focuses on material things made by people, and how we interpret them by practical, theoretical, and historical means. This session switches emphasis, beginning with nature: the ecology of the pavement cracks, the roadside verge, the railway tracks. How have artists recognised the usefulness and beauty of weeds? How can we make the most of their vigour, tenacity, and ubiquity during this unprecedented lockdown?

This two hour webinar will begin by exploring the deep art history of weeds through medieval herbals, the plant-filled borders of books of hours, and Dürer’s extraordinary ‘Great Piece of Turf’, and some interconnections with contemporary artists’ practice. Our focus will then turn to drawing weeds, using a variety of strategies and with a view to creating expressive observational drawings.

This workshop will focus on using materials that you have ready to hand. You can use any paper, and any mark-making implements that you have to hand.

Find more and register here

BEI Research seminar series

The Department of Business, Economics and Informatics is running a series of research-focused webinars over the summer term on a weekly basis until Friday 26th June.

To attend, please join using this Collaborate link at least 10 minutes before the start of the session. This link will be used for each seminar in the series.

Schedule for upcoming talks in the series:

Friday 29th May, 12pm – 1pm

  • Dr Muthu De Silva, “Does affective evaluation matter for the success of university-business collaborations? A sentiment analysis of university-business collaborative project reports”.

Friday 5th June, 12pm – 1pm

  • Dr Pam Yeow with Dr Danielle Tucker (Senior Lecturer in Management at the University of Essex), “Rethinking, ‘Rethinking Ethical Consumerism’”.

Friday 12th June, 12pm – 1pm

  • Dr Rebecca Whiting, “Digi-Housekeeping: The invisible work of flexibility”.

Friday 19th June, 12pm – 1pm

  • Prof. Alex Poulovassilis, “Managing missing and uncertain data on the UK Museum sector”.

Friday 26th June, 12pm – 1pm

  • Prof. Almuth McDowall, “The show must go on – career penalties and work-life balance in the performing arts”.

CHASE Training opportunities for all Arts and Humanities PhD Students at Birkbeck

Auraldiversities series

Auraldiversities is a series of lectures, workshops and in-situ training sessions seeking to encourage creative and critical attention towards aural diversity within the arts and humanities, with particular focus on an ecology of the ear, designed for all those researching within the Arts and Humanities, especially those with an interest in the creative, social and political dimensions of sound and listening.

These sessions specifically address the need for further study and practice inspired by, and concerning, this specific turn in research and focus on a particular theme led by an academic/practitioner with invited guests selected to represent a range of approaches. A CHASE PhD candidate with associated research interests will also give a presentation.

Sessions are purposefully multifaceted, practical, intuitive and experimental in approach and encourage collaborative work and collective activities:

Session One – Thursday 13 February | 1000-1800 | Goldsmiths, University of London

Session Two: Thursday 27 February | 1000-1800 | Venue TBC

Session Three: Thursday 12 March | 100-1800 | Venue TBC

Plenary: Thursday 26 March | 1500-1800 | Keynes Library, Birkbeck School of Arts

Ethnography and Film. Exploring Labour, Technology and Mediation in the Egyptian Film Industry

Wednesday 19 February | University of Kent

The workshop will offer participants advanced training in ethnography, applied to the context of the Egyptian Film industry. Dr El Khachab’s workshop will outline how researchers can successfully apply ethnographic methodologies, developed in Anthropology, to research issues about arts and media, especially film. Dr El Khachab will outline the strategies he developed during his PhD research to gather observations, interviews and documentary data from creatives and technicians working in the largest and most influential media industry in the Arab world. He will also provide participants an insight into how he adapted the presentation of his findings from his PhD thesis into his forthcoming monograph, The Egyptian Film Industry: Labor, Technology, Mediation.

This workshop is aimed at CHASE students from a variety of backgrounds and developed with an interdisciplinary audience in mind. Hence, attending the training does not require any specialised prior knowledge or skills, apart from an interest in the topic of the workshop.

Find out more and register here

Translation x Creative Writing – Daniel Hahn

Monday 24 February  | UEA | 2-4pm

Daniel Hahn is a writer, editor and translator with over sixty books to his name. His work has won him the International Dublin Literary Award, the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize and the Blue Peter Book Award, and been shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize, among others. He is a past chair of the Society of Authors, and on the board of a number of organisations that work with literature and free speech.

Concept: Translation for Non-Translators

Find out more and register here

Future Pathways in Medieval and Early Modern Studies: Academia and Beyond

Friday 6 & Friday 27 March | University of Kent

The intended audience for both workshops is first and foremost students currently undertaking PhDs in any aspect of medieval or early modern studies (including Archaeology, History, History of Art and Literary Studies). Students will be able to register for one or both of the workshops, both of which will be hosted at the University of Kent’s Canterbury campus. The first workshop (‘Beyond Academia’) will take place on Friday 6 March 2020. The second workshop (‘Early Career Academia’) will take place on Friday 27 March 2020.

Beyond Academia | Fri 6 March | Find out more and register here

Early Career Academia | Friday 27 March | Find out more and register

Embodied Approaches to Performing Experimental Music

This training explores embodied approaches to performing experimental music, and methods of observing and reporting on research observations that arise as a result of such performance. It employs an approach to methodological training through practical, hands-on workshops.

Event 4: 16th March 2020 14.00-18.00 with Dr Sean Williams

Event 5: Event 5: 24th April 2020 14.00-17.00 with Dr Lauren Redhead

Essay Film Festival, 2020

The Essay Film Festival, now in its sixth edition, presents a global range of contemporary and restored essayistic works, each exploring the creative zone of possibilities between experimental and documentary modes of filmmaking. 

View full programme

This year’s programme features several key themes and strands:

Image from short film: Idhi Katha Matramena (Is This Just a Story?) (India, 1983)

New work by the Otolith Group and restored essay films by Ruchir Joshi and the Yugantar Collective engage with the cultural history and politics of India, providing imaginative and insightful perspectives on the educational projects of Rabindranath Tagore, the wandering Baal musicians, the changing cities of Ahmedabad and Kolkata, and the political struggles of Indian women. A symposium on the work of author and filmmaker Joshi will take place during the festival with guests from India, France and the USA, while Yugantar member Deepa Dhanraj will join researchers from Berlin Arsenal and Goldsmiths to discuss the restoration of the collective’s films.

Image of a collapsing structure

From Argentina, France, UK and the Philippines come challenging found footage experiments by Leandro Listorti, Frank Beauvais, Sarah Wood and John Torres, which critically examine the status and uses of images today while transforming them into moving and fascinating new creations. A student-led research workshop with guest filmmakers will analyse the theory and practice of found footage in the digital age.

Still from short film: America (Garrett Bradley, USA, 2019)

US artists Garrett Bradley and Cauleen Smith investigate and celebrate the depth and diversity of African-American lives, past and present, with works that, like all good essays, both question the viewer and invite us into an ongoing conversation. Both Bradley and Smith will give lecture-workshops about their practice alongside the screenings of their films. 

Image of filmmaker Jocelyne Saab

Developing the theme of ‘the living archive’, a series of events will address the cultural politics of film restoration, featuring works by Jocelyne Saab, Mostafa Derkaoui, Ingemo Engström and Gerhard Theuring, in addition to the restored films of Ruchir Joshi and the Yugantar Collective. 

Still from short film: Home in E Major, Tamar Rachkovsky, USA, 2019

Finally, Israeli filmmaker Tamar Rachovsky will join the festival to present and discuss Home in E Major, which looks at complex questions of identity and belonging through the deceptively simple lens of the diary film.

Simple and complex, contingent and reflective, hybrid and critical, the essay film that we celebrate at our festival is a constantly renewed invitation to engage with the world and to see it in new ways.

Michael Temple (Director), on behalf of the Essay Film Festival group: Matthew Barrington (Manager), Kieron Corless, Nicolas Freeman (CHASE intern), Catherine Grant, Ricardo Matos Cabo, Janet McCabe, Raquel Morais, and Laura Mulvey.

The Essay Film Festival is a collaboration between Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image and the ICA, with support from the CHASE Doctoral Training Partnership.