Words In Action: Perspectives on Writing and Activism

wordsinactionflyer option1

A discussion about the interfaces between language and activism with women who write.

Spanning a variety of backgrounds—from environmentalism and poetry to journalism and the academy—panellists were invited to speak individually about their work, their preferred medium, and the relationship of their textual/linguistic/creative production to broader social, economic, and political contexts.

During the second half of the evening, professor and novelist Elleke Boehmer moderated a discussion that aims to put these different modes of writing into conversation with one another. The panellists were invited to speak about the use of words “in action” both inside and outside of the academy and offer their perspectives on strategies for leveraging language to widen its field of impact. 

Themes for discussion included:

•    How might genre affect reception?
•    What are the limitations of language in effecting change?
•    What does the rise of new forms of discourse in social media mean for writing and its work?


Nosheen Ali, Assistant Professor, Institute for Educational Development, Aga Khan University
Shaista Aziz, Journalist/Media Specialist/Comedian, Oxford
Elleke Boehmer (Moderator), Professor/Novelist, University of Oxford
Naomi Breeze, Playwright/Performer, Scotland
Hilary Robinson, Professor of Feminist Art Theory, Loughborough University