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Feminist Dialogues on the Politics of Borders: in Conversation with Dr Gemma Bird

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Reflections from/ on ‘the field’: the activist and the activist scholar

This paper looks to reflect and disrupt: to reflect upon the positionality of its authors working with displaced people, and to disrupt the understanding of what the fields of research and activism ‘should’ necessarily look like. This project started as a conversation one evening on the island of Samos, following a ‘traditional’ academic meeting some months earlier in which one author asked to interview the other. During multiple interactions we started to challenge our positionality and our fields. This paper, then, is intended to be one, admittedly small, way of challenging the inherent power structures embedded within knowledge collection, extraction and dissemination. We ask questions about the role of the NGO sector and academia in presenting the lives of people, sometimes objectifying and silencing them in the process. We discuss how this can be challenged and the role of solidarity in establishing a different approach to working with groups of people often presented as ‘vulnerable’.

Chair: Dr Jamie J. Hagen

Discussant Dr Maria-Adriana Deiana

March 29th, 2021 from  1:00 PM to  2:30 PM