DAY THREE: Can victim-survivors of violent crimes find justice through true crime podcasts?

Lili Pâquet discusses how Trace and The Teacher’s Pet can act as informal justice beyond police and courts.

Lili Pâquet

Featured image ‘Albert V Bryan Federal District Courthouse – Alexandria Va – 0016-2012-03-10’ by Tim Evanson is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

True crime podcasts investigating historical ‘cold’ cases where women and children are victims of gender-based violence are increasingly popular. Two recent Australian true crime podcasts, Trace and The Teacher’s Pet, discovered new witnesses in unsolved murder cases, which led to arrests and coronial inquests.

My research aims to discover if these kinds of podcasts can offer informal justice to victims who feel dissatisfied with the formal police and court systems of Australia. These podcasts have similarities to true crime podcasts from countries around the world with adversarial justice systems, like the USA, the UK, and Canada.


Trace Season 1 (2017-2018) is a seven-episode podcast narrated by Rachael Brown for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (the free national broadcaster). The podcast reinvestigates the unsolved 1980 murder of single mother, Maria James.

During the podcast, it is revealed that the local parish priest, Father Bongiorno, was sexually abusing James’s youngest son and that James was murdered the day she confronted the priest. A witness saw Bongiorno covered in blood. Police told James’s sons that Bongiorno was ruled out by DNA evidence. The podcast reveals that the exculpating DNA was from an unconnected police investigation and had been mistakenly mixed into the evidence from James’s murder. Following the podcast, the coroner opened a new inquest into James’s murder. James’s two sons state on the podcast that their voices had finally been heard, in a way they weren’t during the investigation.

Video above: ‘Invasion of the Pod People: Trace’ with Myf Warhurst, Rachel Brown, Ron Iddles, and Mark James at The Wheeler Centre, Melbourne.

The Teacher’s Pet

The Teacher’s Pet (2018), narrated by Hedley Thomas for The Australian, was downloaded over 28 million times. Over 16 episodes, Thomas investigates the 1982 disappearance of Lynette Dawson from Sydney. Thomas explicitly suggests Dawson’s husband killed her and buried her on their property. Chris Dawson’s teenage girlfriend, a student at the high school where he taught, then moved in with him and his two daughters. During the podcast, Thomas uncovers new witnesses and a disturbing culture of sexual abuse by teachers at the school, which led to a police strike force and the 2018 arrest of Chris Dawson. He is currently on trial for Lynette Dawson’s murder and the podcast has been removed for download while the case is before the courts.

Informal Justice

Definitions of ‘justice’ within formal institutions are based on successful convictions and punishment of offenders. However, this form of justice may not give victim-survivors and secondary victims a sense that justice has been achieved. Informal justice occurs outside police, courts, and legislation. According to Bianca Fileborn’s research, victim-survivors achieve a sense of justice if they have:

  • real participation
  • an active voice
  • vindication of harm they experienced
  • accountability by the offender.

Ideas of ‘justice’ should extend beyond outcomes in law and policy to include changes in social attitudes and representations of violence. Clare McGlynn and Nicole Westmarland argue that victim-survivors and secondary victims seek validation from their communities, which could include validation by podcast audiences. Academics such as Tanya Serisier argue that narrators of media about violent crime shape its representation and audience’s understanding of it.

By speaking about their victimisation to a public audience, some victim-survivors may feel they have achieved justice through true crime podcasts and, importantly, have been vindicated and validated by their communities.

Limitations of podcasts

While some podcasts allow victim-survivors or secondary victims to narrate their own stories, other podcasts have harmful representations of women. The Teacher’s Pet is empathetic toward Lynette Dawson, but its depiction of Joanne Curtis—a teenager groomed by her teacher into an unequal and controlling relationship—is problematic.

The language used, such as naming her ‘a teacher’s pet,’ is harmful. Thomas also uses audio recordings of her interviews by police, without any clear consent, replicating the abusive relationship she discloses in those interviews for the titillation of a public audience. Often, true crime podcasts also focus on certain kinds of victims: female, white, middle class, and heterosexual. Podcasts such as Bowraville challenge this stereotype in a promising way.

Some people might argue that true crime podcasts could cause unfair trials, which concerned some listeners of The Teacher’s Pet, but it is doubtful that these investigations would be reopened without the interest caused by the podcasts.

Trace and The Teacher’s Pet are examples of how true crime podcasts can act as informal justice beyond police and courts, but there are limitations. If the podcasts attempt to offer victim-survivors a sense of justice, they should give those people a chance to describe their experiences in their own voices and to feel vindicated through connection with their communities. In future, true crime podcasters could work in tandem with police, giving them access to community grapevines.

Author’s Bio:

Lili Pâquet is a Lecturer in Writing at the University of New England, Australia. Her research is in the areas of rhetoric, crime, environment, and digital media.

To get in contact:





DAY THREE: Voices of Resistance: Women’s Folksongs and Response to Domestic Violence

Garima Singh engages with the everyday resistance posed by women’s folk songs to the dominant social structure and their response to domestic violence in their own melody. 

Garima Singh

Featured image: A group of women assembling to sing together

Ek chup sau sukh

Silence can yield hundredfold happiness

This popular North Indian idiom is often employed to curb women’s free voices. I remember this coming from my mother and my aunts, to my habitually defying objections against patriarchal conduct. Time and again they reminded me and other women around of being subservient to the dominant order and finding happiness as dictated by patriarchal forces.  The memories of this idiom have compelled me to scrutinize the patriarchal world as a seemingly stubborn and in-flexible mechanism but at the same time an easily threatened order that finds risks in women’s free expressions and often works to silence them.  

The motivation of the patriarchal values placed on women’s silence often impelled me to look at women’s voices that the social structure has been so fearful of. In my attempt to recover such voices of rural North Indian women, particularly Haryana, I was driven to recognize the power of women’s voices contradicting the submissive and repressed images that they are often portrayed in. While silence may be a conscious or a non-conscious strategy of self-representation deployed when it is expedient to do so, resistance often comes at multiple avenues.

Far from representing themselves in ways dictated by the dominant, women often imaginatively analyze and critique the social order that they experience and give voice to it in subversive expressive traditions or actions, some more blatantly defiant than others.  

James Scott in his work Weapons of the Weak: Everyday Forms of Peasant Resistance’ (1985)  highlighted the relevance of everyday hidden resistance posed by the dominated Malay Peasants by often inoffensive behaviour  such as false compliance, clandestine sabotage, slander, and other hidden ways that ultimately posed restraints on dominant structures and debilitated their ability to extract resources from the oppressed.

In my analyses of finding women’s resistance against the patriarchal order, it was interesting to discover that women in their everyday life extend their limited boundaries and challenge the patriarchal society in their own melody.

Women voices can be heard unhesitantly offering firm criticisms to social structure in the local folklores. These collective voices may not pose an apparent threat or an overt rebellion against the dominant but they are the lens to find the women’s deeper consciousness and willingness to lament or resist the patriarchal order in its own way. 

While there is ample evidence of women being subjected to violence within the home and more so coming from a hegemonic masculine society like Haryana, it is exciting to note that women’s voices are not muted to the injustices that they so receive.

Resiliently recognising the wrongs and countering them, women’s songs are a way to understand how instances of domestic violence are often spoken about and addressed in solidarity, with a warning message, although in a different tone. One such song, where a woman resists against the advancements of her brother-in-law, highlights her assertion to respond to such household threats.  

Aadhi raat sikar mein ae mera jeth jiman aaya,

Roti ghal k deyan lag gyi, ae I tedi nazar lakhaya,

Thali bhi mari ae , mane bela bhi marya,

Gail patila uthaya,Rota rota gya bhai dhore, bolya teri bahu ne dhamkaya

My brother-in-law came to have food in the middle of the night,

I served him the food, but he had malign intentions,

I threw plates at him, I threw a rolling pin at him,

And I also picked up another big utensil, Crying he went to his brother to complain against me.

Addressing violence within these melodies not just hints at the women’s domestic miseries, but the voices of revolt show that such responses are registered individually as well as collectively. 

Image above: women assembled together to sing songs during wedding ceremonies

Another such song is sung like a crying narration by a woman who, besides being compliant to the patriarchal expectations. has to face regular violence by her mother-in-law. After her husband leaves for work, she duly performs all the duties expected out of her, but is treated with violence at home. Lamenting over her destiny, she finally lashes out at the mother-in –law and wishes for her family to be cursed.

Hey aape tahe jala naukari digar gaya chodh saas k bharose

Hey saanjhe te mere jetha keh gaya, tadke einkh nalana

Hey neend fikar mein aai kona, saanjhe chaakki jhoyi

Hey atharan ser maine gehun pise, fir makki piswai

Hey pis khot ke gayi khet mein, suraj mandare aai

Hey saara te maine einkh nalaya, pher mirch nalwai

Saanjh hui jab ghar ne aai, saasu ne kari pitai

Eb lagte sasu teri sunu thi, eb sunle tu meri

Sare te thare danger Mario, bhaisayan ne leja kasai

Charo te tere bete Mario, Mario tera jamaiBuddi ri tera Buddha Mario, huio rand lugai

My husband left for his job leaving me under my mother-in-law

My elder brother-in-law in the evening told me to go for weeding of sugarcane

I was not able to sleep due to tension, I started grinding from the evening itself

I grinded 18 kg wheat and then I grinded the corn

After grinding I went to the field, sun was on my head

First I weeded the sugarcane, and then I weeded the Chillies

In the evening when I returned home, my mother-in-law hit me,

It’s enough of you, now you listen to me my mother-in-law,

May all your animals die and may butcher takes away your buffaloes,

May all your four sons die, may your son-in-law die too.

These lamenting voices of women against violence inflicted on them signifies how women have been conscious of their everyday struggle and time and again, consciously and unconsciously, individually and in solidarity, pose a potent threat to the dominant.

These small acts of rebellion may not count as open revolts, but are still visible and loud enough protests to mark women’s expression in a society where voices are given to man alone.

Author’s bio:

Garima Singh is an Assistant Professor at the Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies, Vivekananda School of Law and Legal Studies in Delhi. She has a keen interest in gender studies, particularly gender and language. She has published on the topics of caste and exclusion and has undertaken ethnographic work on the folk culture of Haryana. Her PhD awarded by the University of Delhi was entitled, The Gender and Politics of Language: Voice of Jat women in Rural North India.

DAY TWO: Where it all began

Almost 50 years on, Anne Summers writes about the opening of Elsie Women’s Refuge in 1974 (Australia).

Anne Summers

It is almost impossible to fathom that in just 27 months it will be 50 years since we opened Elsie Women’s Refuge.  In March 1974 a rowdy group of feminists in the inner-Sydney neighbourhood of Glebe broke into an abandoned house, which serendipitously bore the nameplate Elsie (many houses in Australia used to have names). We changed the locks, declared squatters’ rights, and opened Australia’s first modern women’s refuge. As luck would have it, the adjoining house was also unoccupied, so we smashed our way in there as well, giving us two tiny cottages to operate from. It took three nerve-wracking days before the first woman and her kids showed up. We had opened the refuge under the most precarious of circumstances: our tenancy legally questionable, no funds, very little support from other sections of the women’s movement which questioned whether feminists should be providing services. And now, after much media fanfare on the need for safe housing for women and kids escaping domestic violence, no one had shown up.

Video above: Excerpt from the film ‘Brazen Hussies’ featuring Anne Summers. Reproduced with permission from writer and director Catherine Dwyer.  

We learned later of the women who had written down the phone number after hearing me interviewed by Sydney’s most notorious shock-jock radio host (who turned out to be amazingly sympathetic and kept repeating the number long after I had left the studio). After our first ‘client’ arrived, a Scottish woman and her three little boys who, to her astonishment, was given an extremely effusive welcome, we were never not full to overflowing.  

By June 1975, just fifteen months later, there were eight women’s refuges around the country, all operating on uncertain future funding. A friendly feminist who worked in the Office of Women’s Affairs in Canberra urged us to ring around the other refuges and “get some figures on how many families had come through”.

Diana Beaton, one of the volunteers who kept Elsie going for many years after that shaky start, made the calls: “Over that period, we’d sheltered 13,500 women and children. Even we were gob-smacked,” she said in a magazine interview many years later. 

Image above: Photograph taken inside a women’s refuge at Glebe, Sydney, New South Wales 1975. Source: National Archives of Australia, A6180, 2/6/75/11 

For years after I was no longer involved, I would hear stories from women who had sought sanctuary at Elsie.  Mandy Sayer, a well-known Sydney writer, tells of her mother piling into a cab with she and her brother, wearing only their pajamas, and asking to be taken to Elsie. It was a $50 cab ride. Her mother had no money but at Elsie they were welcomed, the cab was paid for, and Mandy and her family began the reset of their lives. 

Back on that first day, in March 1974, I had given countless radio and television interviews, to (always) male and often patronizing interviewers. A famous ABC journalist informed me that “nagging wives” invited such violence. Fortunately, such views were not commonly expressed (at least not to our faces). 

Our daring act in announcing that we – a bunch of 20-something students and others – were going to provide safety, succor and help in finding a new life for women and kids escaping violence, attracted scorn, curiosity, applause and a huge amount of overt sympathy and support. We were both astonished and gratified when a local men’s charitable organization, Rotary, turned up and offered practical help. They spent a weekend securing our back fence and building a playground for the kids. Joyce Mayne, a large Sydney whitegoods retailer, got on the phone – herself! – and asked what we needed. The next day a truck delivered a refrigerator, washing machine, and dryer. The locals in Westmoreland Street started dropping off clothes and other useful items. 

Image above: Women’s Liberation Calendar 1985, Women’s refuges opened 74/74. Source: Sybylla Cooperative Press and Publications Ltd

Our struggle back then was to secure funding just so we could keep going, and we did not think too much about the future.  I am certain that none of us could have contemplated a time fifty years on when there would be almost 100 refuges in NSW. Or that in 2021 a conservative state government would announce funding for a further 75 refuges designed to replace the communal style housing we started with the more appropriate ‘core and cluster’ model. This style of accommodation gives women more privacy, enables them to bring teenage boys, and pets, with them while still being able to access the support services provides by refuges.

Image above: Poster for a concert to raise money for the Elsie Refuge, 1975 featuring the women’s liberation band, Clitoris. Source: Toni Robertson and Julie Bishop / National Gallery of Australia Collection

Women’s shelters, as many prefer to call them these days, are now mainstream, supported across the political spectrum. It seems they are here to stay.

Is this what we intended? That we would have to accept that domestic and family violence would be with us forever? We probably did not articulate it clearly at the time, but I think that what we wanted was for the violence to end. Refuges were part of the plan, but they were a means to an end, never the end itself.

I don’t want to see it as failure that are almost doubling the number of shelters in NSW because we need those safe places. We need the services that help women and kids reset their lives. We need those brave and selfless shelter workers who have devoted their lives to helping other women try to leave violence behind them.

But as we move towards marking – celebrating? – 50 years since we opened Elsie, maybe we should once again be brave, break the rules, dare to imagine a future without domestic and family violence. And plan how to make it happen.

Image above: Anne Summers at Elsie Women’s Refuge

Author’s bio:

Anne Summers is an Australian feminist with a long involvement in the women’s movement. She is the author of nine books, including the ground-breaking Damned Whores and God’s Police (1975), and is currently involved in a project on how to reduce domestic and family violence.  She was one of a group of Sydney feminists who established Elsie, Australia’s first women’s refuge.

DAY ONE: Scottish folk tradition of ballads about violence against women

Award-winning folk singer, songwriter and storyteller, Karine Polwart, reflects on a Scottish folk tradition of ballads about violence against women.

Karine Polwart

Featured image above: “St. Enoch nursing her son, St. Mungo” by Beth M527 is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

In the late 90s, I worked for domestic abuse charity, Scottish Women’s Aid. I was, simultaneously, also a fledgling folksinger, devouring field recordings from Edinburgh University’s School of Scottish Studies and learning gritty ballads knee-to-knee from older singers in the city’s pub music sessions.   

I was amazed to find a Scots song tradition brimming with stories of violence against women. 

I heard ‘The Laird o the Dainty Dounby‘ from the great Gordeanna McCulloch. In it, the Laird asks a farmworker’s daughter: 

“O lassie, o lassie, whit would ye gie  (Oh girl, oh girl, what would you give)

if I was tae lie ae nicht wi ye?” (if I was to lie a night with you?)

She replies: 

“Tae lie ae nicht that will never, never be, (To lie a night, that will never, never be)

though you’re Laird o’ the Dainty Dounby” (even though you are the Laird of the Dainty Dounby)

The Laird “laid her doun” anyway. Indeed “it was a lang, lang time e’er he raised her up again”.

The daughter gets pregnant. The Laird weds her. Her family rejoices. It’s a jaunty song, often sung with a raised eyebrow.  

I find its jauntiness awful. 

In 2005, I recorded ‘The Ballad of Eppie Morrie’, arranged by my friend Corrina Hewat. It includes a visceral depiction of an attempted forced marriage, and Eppie’s tooth and nail fight against her abductor and would-be rapist, Willie. 

The Ballad of Eppie Morrie by Karan Casey

“Willie takes her to bed and attempts to sleep with her”, reads a 1970 field note entry, thus dodging a catalogue search under ‘rape’ on the sound archives portal Tobar an Dualchais/Kist O Riches. 

“In the morning, Eppie Morrie is still a virgin and is rescued by John Forsyth of Breadalbane”, the record continues. Eppie’s epic, night-long resistance, the reason so many women singers connect with this song, doesn’t merit a mention. 

As yet, there are no search options for ‘sexual violence’ or ‘domestic abuse’ on the Tobar an Dualchais website, though examples abound.  

In ‘The Bonnie Banks of Fordie/Airdrie’, a robber demands that each of three sisters marry him, stabbing two for their refusal. The third warns that her estranged brother will avenge them. When she reveals his name – Babylon – the robber realises he’s killed his own sisters. 

His crime against kin, and his subsequent suicide, are the dramatic denouement to this song. For the two young women he murders, his sisters, it’s not their story. It’s his.  

The Bonnie Banks o Fordie/Pennknivsmordaren by Malinky

Too often, it is. Australian writer Jane Gilmore addresses the contemporary centring of abusive men’s experiences via her Twitter tag #FixedIt. She edits news headlines which excuse men’s violence against women, underplay their criminal agency, and render abused women invisible[1].

Lassie Gaitherin Nuts’ is sung by legendary Traveller singers Jeannie Robertson and her daughter, Lizzie Higgins. It’s described in 1961 and 1970 field notes as a ‘bawdy song’ about a woman ‘taken advantage of by three men passing by’.  

It’s a song about the gang rape of a sleeping woman. #fixedit 

I’ve never heard this sung live. Would, could, anyone sing it now? On the 1970 tape, Lizzie Higgins describes the raped woman as a “silly lass”, which catches my breath. But in 2021, there’s plenty talk still of silly lassies and their responsibility for preventing crimes against their own bodies.  

In 2003, as a member of the band Malinky, I wrote a ballad in Scots called ’Thaney.  It’s a telling of the myth of St Enoch (aka. Thenew and Thaney), one of Glasgow’s two patron saints, known locally for the shopping centre and underground station named after her. Prior to reading Elspeth King’s ‘A History of Glasgow Women’, I assumed Enoch was a man. I suspect many assume so still. 

In medieval legend though, she was a 6th century princess, from the area now called Lothian. Thaney was banished from her father’s court for refusing to submit to a forced marriage. Whilst living in exile, the Welsh prince Owain mab Urien raped her, and she became pregnant by him.  

When he discovered her pregnancy, out of wedlock, Thaney’s father, Loth, ordered her execution. She was stoned and thrown from Traprain Law, East Lothian. But she survived, and was cast out in a coracle at Aberlady. She washed up safely across the Forth at Culross, where monks took her in, and her son, Mungo, was born.  

Elspeth King regards Thaney/Enoch as Scotland’s first recorded survivor of rape and domestic abuse. 

Thaney by Malinky

Mungo would become well known as Glasgow’s founding saint.  But Enoch is only in recent years more widely recognised in her own right. Here she is, nursing a baby Mungo, as represented by street artist, Smug: 

“St. Enoch nursing her son, St. Mungo” by Beth M527 is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Glasgow’s founding story is bound up with rape, flight and refuge. Potentially, this speaks powerfully to the experiences of Glasgow women today, and to all those seeking asylum in the city in flight from gender-based violence, and other forms of persecution.  

The stories we remember, and keep alive, matter now.

Scotland’s vast intangible cultural heritage of myth, song and story has been passed orally from generation to generation across many centuries via the immense skills and knowledge of traditional singers and storytellers who went before us. Collectively, we owe a huge debt of gratitude to them, and to the fieldwork ethnologists, on which the University of Edinburgh School of Scottish Studies Archives and other sound repositories have been built over the past seventy years. 

But we live in this time, not theirs.  As contemporary singers, storytellers, historians, and cultural institutions we need to reappraise the inequalities, injustices, cruelties and prejudices, which have been written and sung into our living traditions. And that requires careful, critical intervention in our archives and catalogues so that we can navigate and cherish these traditional sources with a contemporary understanding of violence against women, and gender-based violence.  

There’s work to do. 



[2] Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches  is a portal to a selection of sound archives from The School of Scottish Studies Archives, The Canna Collection (National Trust for Scotland) and BBC Radio nan Gàidheal.

Author’s bio:

BBC Radio 2 Folk Singer Of The Year 2018, Karine Polwart is a multi-award winning Scottish songwriter and musician, as well as theatre-maker, storyteller, spoken-word performer and author. Her songs combine folk influences and myth with themes as diverse as Donald Trump’s corporate megalomania, Charles Darwin’s family life and the complexities of modern parenthood. She sings traditional songs too and writes to commission for film, theatre, animation and thematic collaborative projects. Karine is seven-times winner at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, including three times for Best Original Song.

Further Resources

Spotify playlist provided by Karine Polwart for 16Days of Activism  is a portal to a selection of sound archives from The School of Scottish Studies Archives, The Canna Collection (National Trust for Scotland) and BBC Radio nan Gàidheal.

School of Scottish Studies Archives

Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches 

Scottish Women’s Aid 

Rape Crisis Scotland 

Scottish Women’s Rights Centre 

DAY ONE: Welcome to the 16 Days Blogathon 2021

Welcome to the 16 Days Blogathon 2021. From November 25 – December 10 we will be posting voices, stories and insights to raise awareness of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based violence.

Today is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and the beginning of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence  which runs from 25 November to 10 December, Human Rights Day. Welcome to Day One of our annual blogathon bringing together voices from academia, activism, art and media to raise awareness of this ongoing struggle. The blogathon marks a continuing collaboration between the University of EdinburghDr B.R. Ambedkar University, Delhi, and the University of New South Wales

This year our theme is Histories, Legacies, Myths and Memories. It is 30 years since the 16 Days of Activism campaign was first launched by the-now Center for Women’s Global Leadership at Rutgers University in the States, and more than 50 years since feminists of the so-called Second Wave women’s movement began mobilising to expose, confront, and campaign for the elimination of violence against women. We reflect upon these contemporary histories and lessons, including reflections from Australia and the UK. But we also take the longer view with posts exploring manifestations of gender-based violence – sometimes hiding in plain sight – through the centuries.  Listening as past voices surface — from the archive, or through myth, traditional songs and stories, or via truth-telling criminal and media investigation — highlights striking continuities of lived experience and feeling, of societal and cultural stigma, and of strategies of resistance.

There has sometimes been a reluctance by scholars and curators to fully acknowledge the historical traces of gender-based violence, whilst others struggle with the ethical dilemmas and emotional costs of recovering these marginalised stories of trauma, injustice and agency.

Over the next 16 Days we will travel from Australia to India, Scotland to the Caribbean, and Mexico to England. Our contributors take us from Ancient Rome to a squat in 1970s Sydney; from Scotland in the 1500s to the partition violence of 1940s India.  We meet women seeking justice through medieval courts and modern true crime podcasts; we hear stories of abuse and survival from epic myths and traditional songs from India and Europe; we share the dilemmas of educators and curators; we learn about the struggles of marginalised and racialised women for justice and support both within their own communities and wider societies; and we reflect on lessons to be learned from both contemporary and ancient histories. 

Ultimately, a focus on histories, legacies, myths and memories gives us a very important tool. It helps us to identify more lucidly what is unique and distinct about the moment and location we inhabit. It reinforces our understanding of the ubiquity of gender-based violence as well as the ways that the modes and experiences of gender-based violence are shaped by intersecting structures and identities of difference and inequality.

It helps us to understand where we have come from, and the continuing resonances of the past over the long haul of time. And it helps us to imagine where we want to go.

We launch our 2021 Blogathon with a powerful contribution by award-winning Scots singer and composer Karine Polwart who surfaces stories of sexual and gender-based violence in traditional music and oral traditions and their contemporary relevance.

Content note: posts inevitably address distressing experiences and issues around sexual and gender-based violence. We hope they also provoke, energise and sometimes uplift. 

The 2021 curators:

University of Edinburgh: Prof. Fiona Mackay (Director) and Aerin Lai (PhD web and editorial assistant) for genderED; Dr. Zubin Mistry (Lead), Prof. Louise Jackson, Prof. Diana Paton, Dr Hatice Yildiz, for the Histories of Gender and Sexualities Research Group.

Dr B R Ambedkar University Delhi: Prof. Rukmini Sen (Director, Centre for Publishing), Dr Rachna Mehra (School of Global Affairs).

University of New South Wales: Prof. Jan Breckenridge (Co-Convenor), Mailin Suchting (Manager) and Georgia Lyons (Research Assistant) for the Gendered Violence Research Network.