‘Conversations in Social Justice’ is the podcast series for the Institute for Social Justice.
The series seeks to animate discussion both within York St John University and more widely about the role of higher education in social justice. Each conversation will be hosted by a different member of the York St John academic community, in conversation with invited external guests.
In this podcast York St John MA Media Production student Mpho Dintwa talks to Everett Ndlovu, Lecturer in Journalism. Mpho discusses the making of his award-winning documentary Ties that Bind. The film, which received one of the top prizes at the Sotambe International Film Festival, tells the tale of Michael Dingake, a political activist and writer who was a fellow prisoner of Nelson Mandela in the battle against apartheid.
In this podcast, York St John University PhD student Jack Hunter talks to Sophia Parker, director of Emerging Futures at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF). They discuss the relationship between the imagination and social action, whether we are experiencing a crisis of imagination, and discuss examples of inspiring activism that are trying to foster radical new ways of imagining the world.
In this podcast we hear from two former York St John theatre students – Jordan Towers and Maia McConnell – about how the Prison Partnership Project creates the perfect landscape for students to transition confidently into employment and professional industry roles not only with exceptional experience but also with knowledge and skills in good practice.
In this podcast, On the Out researcher and practitioner, Jess Robson is joined by Rachel Conlon, senior lecturer in Theatre and Director of the York St John Prison Partnership Project. They discuss the roots of The YSJ PPP, the value of the arts with and for women in the criminal justice system and the benefits of prison placements for the students, participants, and prison staff. Rachel also shares her hopes for the project as it enters its 10th year.
In this podcast, Researchers and Practitioners, Paula Clark and Jess Robson introduce to staff and students the work and research of ‘On the Out’ – a new sister project from, The YSJ Prison Partnership, which explores the gaps in creative provision in the City of York for women and girls who are at risk.
In this conversation, Dr Brett Heasman (Psychology, YSJ), Carl Cameron (a lead peer mentor at the autism charity Matthew’s Hub), and Sammy Williams (YSJ researcher and member of Matthew’s Hub) discuss how to do participatory research with autistic people. They discuss various definitions of autism, the historical problems arising when autistic voices have not been included, and how such challenges should be addressed.
In this Conversation, Helen Trouille and Jan Maltby from the law school talk to Lady Hale, former President of the Supreme Court, about a number of issues in social justice, ranging from access to the legal professions for students from non-traditional backgrounds, to government proposals to repeal the Human Rights Act and pass a new British Bill of Rights. In the course of the conversation, the speakers also reflect on the heated atmosphere surrounding key cases in the Brexit process, the reporting in the print media at the time and the impact on the judiciary.
This podcast is hosted by Human Geography Lecturer Su Fitzpatrick in conversation with Amie Hayes and Laura Southward of York based learning support partnership Equip Your Mind. Together they discuss critical challenges for UK universities as provides for mental health support services for students; staff capacity and training; and the impact of outsourcing support services to private providers.
Professor Lee Higgins is joined by music education scholar Roger Mantie from the University of Toronto in Scarborough, Canada, to discuss questions surrounding social justice and their relation to the themes of music, leisure and education.
Dr Olalekan Adekola is joined by Conservation Scientist, Educator and Community organiser, Dr Salamatu Jidda-Fada to discuss her environmental conservation work and mentoring African youths to be active in global environmental governance. The discussion also explores what universities can do to support youth climate activists from the Global South.
Shared parental leave is a great policy that has the potential to bring about cultural change and drive gender equality. However, a key barrier to shared parental leave is the workplace support. Discussion in this podcast is based on shared parental leave and breastfeeding practices in UK Higher Education institution and by extension to practices in other sectors. The podcast highlights key barriers and recommendations which every employer should consider. This podcast is chaired by Professor Esther McIntosh of York St John University, in conversation with Dr Ernestine Gheyoh Ndzi and Dr Anjali Raj (both York St John), Jessica Chivers of Talent Keeper Specialist, and Emma Shepherd of Maternity Teacher Paternity Teacher Project.
Contemporary universities have been corporatised, commercialised and financialised in the name of transparency, accountability and ‘value for money’. This raises serious questions about the meaning, relevance and viability of social justice within the academy today. In this podcast, in conversation with Peter Fleming, Professor of Organisation Studies at the University of Technology, Sydney, and author of Dark Academia: How Universities Die, Professor of Education, Matthew Clarke, discusses the dilemmas, contradictions and challenges confronting aspirations for social justice within the neoliberalised organisations that contemporary universities have become and asks whether there are any realistic grounds for hope and optimism today.
If universities are founded for the common good, what is the social contract of research? In this podcast Matthew Reason, Director of the Institute for Social Justice, is joined by Dr Erinma Ochu, a transdisciplinary biologist and storyteller from the iSchool at Manchester Metropolitan University and visiting racial justice fellow at The Ada Lovelace Institute. Their conversation explores the potential of community-university partnerships, achieving equity in research funding and the value of ‘the commons’ for knowledge exchange to rebuild social and cultural infrastructures.
‘We have the power those who came before us have given to us, to move beyond the place where they were standing.’ Audre Lorde.
Season 2, Episode 1: Colonial Histories and Institutional Memory: York St John University’s Historical Archive
Dr Adam Stock is joined by PhD researcher Amy McCarthy and Academic Services Manager Tom Peach to discuss their Students as Researchers project which explored documented, institutional colonial histories in York St John University’s Historical Archive. Together they explore historical pedagogy, colonial Christian Missionary work in Japan, India and Canada, and the complex implications for York St John as a social justice institution.
We understand better than ever that the human dramas of social justice can’t be disentangled from the natural ecosystems in which they are embedded. The creative artforms of storytelling, creative writing and theatre have an important role to play in helping us to see and understand these interconnections. But how can artforms which have tended to be all about human interactions develop ways of speaking for other species? Cath Heinemeyer and Liesl King of York St John University discuss these questions with Anthony Nanson, storyteller and author of Storytelling and Ecology: empathy, enchantment and emergence in the use of oral narratives.
Dr Helen Pleasance and Caleb Klaces, both writers and Senior Lecturers at the York Centre for Writing, York St John University, speak to Dr Lucy Burke of Manchester Metropolitan University about the role of creative writing in achieving social justice for people with dementia. They discuss the concept of ‘personhood’, the ethics of literary representations of dementia and Lucy’s recent activism in response to the UK government’s COVID-19 policies.
Dr Joan Walton, Senior Lecturer in the School of Education at York St John University, talks to Professor Hilary Bradbury, Co-Editor of The Sage Handbook of Action Research, and founder of AR+, which has the aim of making global knowledge democracy more available by supporting inter/transdisciplinary dialogue for those practising at the developmental edge of action research worldwide. Hilary speaks about the work that she is doing to spread the practice of participatory action research, and actively encourage the involvement of marginal groups from both the global south and north.
In this podcast, Dr Charlotte Haines Lyon, lecturer at York St John University talks to Dr Debbie Ralls of University of Manchester and Professor Kaz Stuart of University of Cumbria. Their conversation explores how democratic methodologies contribute to social justice and the variety of conundrums they pose. They discuss how democratic methodologies can disrupt power, research and also the academy.
In this podcast Matthew Reason, Director of the Institute for Social Justice, talks to Jonathan P Jones of New York University about universities as spaces for activism, whether through pedagogy, mentoring, research or institutional structures. They discuss the challenge and importance of exploring race within what are still predominantly white spaces and the importance of actively working to ensure that the future of universities is more diverse and representative.
Professor of Counselling Psychology at York St John University, Divine Charura, talks to Dr Jonathan Chaplin, a political theologian and a member of the divinity faculty at Cambridge University. Their discussion explores a range of matters including the role university has in activism and social justice, the qualities of a University of Sanctuary, and why it’s important to engage in research and curriculum that identifies, exposes, and addresses systemic and interpersonal inequalities, injustices, and power relationships across society.
Nick Rowe is Director of Converge at York St John, which runs University-based courses in the arts to adults with experience of mental ill-health. In this podcast he talks to Brendan Stone, Professor of social engagement and the humanities at the University of Sheffield. Together they discuss the multiple benefits of opening up universities to work people with mental ill-health and the ways in which we all learn through our encounters with the lived experiences of other people.
YSJU lecturer in art and ecological justice Dr Cath Heinemeyer finds out more about climate justice from Thimali Kodikara, producer and presenter of the Mothers of Invention podcast (@MothersInvent), who has interviewed climate innovators and leaders from the grassroots to the top tables of global policy.