Like [the pleasure of wearing] a loose-fitting garment – finding liberating and enabling ways to wear an academic life
Activating personal and professional alchemy, kindness, movement and change in the academy
This fourth and final theme uses the metaphor of the university as an ‘infinite game’ (Harre, Grant, Locke, Sturm, 2017) to connect us to our heart for imagination, hope, and inclusion. We (re)turn to our contemplative beginnings, inward to our essence, to our own academic institutions, to our own stories and struggles as women in academia, and to our hopes and dreams to realise our potential as connected people living and working together.
In these final hours of our conference we seek to draw strength from our collective care and deep listening. We use this final theme to articulate what matters to us, and to organise ourselves towards reimagining and recreating academia. And, like the article that inspires this theme, we conclude our conference with conversations and talking of STARs (Slow, Tiny, Acts of Resistance).
In the final hours of this conference we invite you to discuss and make room for imagining, planning, and enacting small creative acts of kindness, care, hope, disruption, in the company of others. We use this theme to remember who we are, remember we are enough, that we do enough, and to commit to keeping the infinite game in play.
Theme 4 Keynote
The infinite game: Reimagining activism in the academy
We discuss how to reimagine activism in the academy by viewing ourselves as part of an infinite game. Niki will outline the characteristics of the infinite game –the key purpose of which is to keep what we value in play and invite others in – and discuss the university’s ‘beautiful mission’ in this light. She will also discuss how we currently fail to achieve our mission through the distraction of finite games – the bureaucracy and competitions we live by. Barbara will explore the critic and conscience role of universities and how teaching can be reimagined in light of the infinite game. We will each offer three suggestions for activism in the academy. Our presentations will take a combined time of 50 minutes, after which we will have a 20 minute break for participants to come up with their own ideas for reimagined activism. When we come back from the break Barbara and Niki will discuss together how to make the shiFt happen in response to your thoughts.
Theme 4 Panel
Slow Tiny Acts of Resistance (STARS)
Catherine, Janet and Agnes discuss slow tiny acts of resistance (STARS) in and out of academia in relation to ideas of radical hope, activism and reflective practice.