Tuesday November 3: Caroline Sheedy, Dundalk Institute of Technology: Gender in the classroom – power and responsibility?

CNR-TCRU Postgraduate Narrative Research Seminars, 2020-2021

Organised by Centre for Narrative Research (CNR), University of East London

and Thomas Coram Research Unit (TCRU), UCL Institute of Education

All seminars are online, 5-6.30pm UK time.

To book, please follow the Eventbrite link below, and subscribe to the CNR elist for details: https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/cgi-bin/webadmin?A0=CENTREFORNARRATIVERESEARCH

All are welcome, particularly graduate students.

Caroline Sheedy

Caroline Sheedy was born and lives currently in Dublin, Ireland. Her research interest has always focused on identity, from many angles, and the individual within digital society. This has manifested itself in the fields of cryptography, e-voting, the digital divide in society, and pedagogy.  She is influenced by working within academia as a lecturer of computing and mathematics. She also spent a number of years working on a consultancy basis within the postal sector, examining the potential of this sector to assist in reducing the digital divide.  Caroline has a keen sense that the role that universities have as a cultural influence on their students, particularly in technical fields, and is a Fulbright Scholar (in waiting!) to U.C. Berkeley, where she will pursue this line of inquiry.

The gender imbalance in STEM fields has been subject to much attention, with initiatives and studies focused on potential causes, redressing the balance by efforts in the pipeline and examining the impact on women in STEM’s careers. Men make up the overwhelming majority of STEM students, faculty and professionals. This small-scale study uses focus groups with students and faculty and narrative analysis, examines the how this gender imbalance at Higher Education may influence men’s construction of women. We find that attitudes evidence by faculty are replicated by final year students and position the influence of Higher education on gendering processes.

Tuesday October 13: Jade Levell, Bournemouth University: Using music elicitation in narrative interviews about childhood experiences of domestic violence/abuse and on-road/gang-involvement.

CNR-TCRU Postgraduate Narrative Research Seminars, 2020-2021

Organised by Centre for Narrative Research (CNR), University of East London

and Thomas Coram Research Unit (TCRU), UCL Institute of Education

All seminars are online, 5-6.30pm UK time.

To book, please follow the Eventbrite link below, and subscribe to the CNR elist for details: https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/cgi-bin/webadmin?A0=CENTREFORNARRATIVERESEARCH

All are welcome, particularly graduate students.

Jade Levell

The Road Home study focused on the lives of young men who have experienced domestic violence and abuse (DVA) in childhood and become involved ‘on road’ and/or with gangs. In the study two narrative techniques were used; life-story inspired interviews which were aided by music elicitation. Participants were asked to bring three music tracks to assist them in telling parts of their life story. Some used the lyrics to articulate their experiences, whereas others used the music video as metaphor for their own stories. The music also provided an anchor to the past where the participants remembered listening to the tracks. A particular focus of the analysis was seeing how masculinities were performed and changed through the life-course, using Connell’s 1987; 2005 framework which focused on Power relations, production relations, and cathexis. This presentation will focus on the ways in which the participants used the music as an elicitation tool to share their life-stories, and how gender theory deepened the understanding of masculine identity in the narratives.

Jade Levell is a lecturer in Criminology at Bournemouth University. She specialises in research on gender-based violence, in particular domestic violence, as well as gender theory with a focus on masculinities. Alongside The Road Home Study looking at childhood experiences of DVA and on-road/gang-involvement, Jade is also the PI for the UK branch of an international study into DVA perpetrator interventions. Prior to her research career Jade worked for ten years in charities that work to end gender-based violence. This diverse range of grassroots advocacy and activism work informs her research practice. Jade’s academic background is grounded in anthropology and gender studies.

Jade Levell, Lecturer in Criminology, Faculty of Health and Social Sciences, Bournemouth University


Website: www.jadelevell.com.  Twitter: @JadeLevell

CNR-TCRU Postgraduate Narrative Research Seminars, 2020-2021

Organised by Centre for Narrative Research (CNR), University of East London

and Thomas Coram Research Unit (TCRU), UCL Institute of Education

All seminars are online, 5-6.30pm UK time.

Eventbrite links will accompany the individual announcements of these seminars.

To book, please check back on this page, or subscribe to the CNR elist for details: https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/cgi-bin/webadmin?A0=CENTREFORNARRATIVERESEARCH

Explore CNR’s webpages: https://www.uel.ac.uk/research/centre-for-narrative-research

Read CNR’s blog: https://centrefornarrativeresearch.wordpress.com/

See CNR Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=centre%20for%20narrative%20research

Follow CNR’s Twitter feed: @CNRUEL

All are welcome, particularly graduate students.

October 13: Jade Levell, Bournemouth University: Using music elicitation in narrative interviews about childhood experiences of domestic violence/abuse and on-road/gang-involvement.

November 3: Caroline Sheedy, DKIT. Gender in the Classroom – power and responsibility? 

February 9: Erica Masserano, UEL. Invisible London: Place and identity in non-fiction by Londoners

March 2: Jenny Young, Napier University. One year caring: a longitudinal narrative study on men’s experiences of caring for their partner with cancer.

April 6: Cecile Remy, UCL. Looking for the ‘Rich Child’. An exploration of the ‘images’ English residential care-workers hold of the children and young people they work with in an urban children’s home.

May 4: Charlotte Chiu, Tavistock Centre: Family therapists’ narratives in attending to race, ethnicity and culture issues when working with children with eating disorders.

CNR Postgraduate Associate Certificate: Narrative Research by Distance Learning

black and red typewriter
Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

Please forward to colleagues and students who may be interested

Centre for Narrative Research, University of East London

Postgraduate Associate Certificate (30 Masters credits) 2020-21:

Narrative Research by Distance Learning

September 2020-January 2021.  Course code: SC7301

Distance learningonline tutorials, group e-meetings. 30 Masters credits

The Postgraduate Associate Certificate in Narrative Research by Distance Learning at the Centre for Narrative Research, University of East London, is a unique interdisciplinary programme, drawing on social sciences and the humanities to provide graduate-level education in narrative theories and methods. gives students experience in the application of narrative concepts and analysis to particular fields. In addition, the programme develops more general skills of review, criticism, and team and individual research, all within the context of narrative research.

This  Postgraduate Associate Certificate  programme provides 30 UK postgraduate Masters (Level 7) credits. It can be taken singly or in combination, alongside other UEL Masters’ level modules. The module is suitable for participants from many disciplinary backgrounds. Participants take it as part of Masters programmes, as part of PhD training, as skills development for research in applied and community settings, and in order to expand their methodological range as academic researchers.

This module provides students with an overview of the range of narrative research methodologies. Beginning with an exploration of the meaning of narrative, the module outlines Labovian methods, biographical methods and context-oriented methods. It then considers three key fields of narrative research: oral, personal narratives; written narratives (including autobiographies and letters); visual narratives; digital narratives; and process or activity narratives. Through a range of theoretical perspectives, we shall be attempting to address a number of questions; for instance: How do people come to see themselves as distinct subjects about whom a story can be told? What role do memory, ideology, sense of audience, etc. play in people’s accounts of their lives? How do class, ethnicity, gender and other social characteristics shape the stories people tell? What do we look for when we analyze accounts of people’s lives? What are the forms and effects of decolonizing approaches to narrative research?

The module content is all available online and can be downloaded and worked on offline, for those with limited internet access. We will also have Teams, Zoom or other platform group seminars and individual tutorial meetings,  as requested by students. 

For more details, please see https://www.uel.ac.uk/postgraduate/courses/narrative-research-via-dist-learning – this page also provides an application link

For academic information, please email Corinne Squire, c.squire@uel.ac.uk

For administrative help, please email pgadmiss@uel.ac.uk or edu.socsciadmin@uel.ac.uk

Narrative projects relating to COVID-19

A collection of individual, collective and institutional narrative projects on the subject of the COVID-19 pandemic taking place across the world. Most of the projects are open to contributions. Please click on each project for more information. If you know of similar projects, please e-mail the link to CNR

Collated by Hannah Flint

Institutional projects

COVID19 ARCHIVE | Mass Observation

Mass Observation is collecting journals from individuals, community groups and schools to record experiences of COVID-19.


Some colleagues at Edinburgh Sociology, including Liz Stanley and Emilia Sereva of the Whites Writing Whiteness project, have created a website devoted to coronavirus pandemic stories and perspectives.

LETTERS OF CONSTRAINT | National Justice Museum

This collection of letters offers individual experiences of isolation to provide an insight into the COVID-19 lockdown.


This collection of letters offers individual experiences of isolation to provide an insight into the COVID-19 lockdown.

NYC COVID-19 ORAL HISTORY, NARRATIVE AND MEMORY ARCHIVE |Columbia Centre for Oral History Research

Columbia University’s INCITE, alongside the Oral History Archives are creating an archive documenting New York City’s experience of the pandemic.

POST-CORONA LETTERS | Storylab University of Twente

An international consortium is conducting a longitudinal study on how people envision what the future should look like after the pandemic and how their future perspectives evolve over time.

RISING UP TO THE CHALLENGE | Barking & Dagenham Giving

Barking & Dagenham Giving have teamed up with the council and You Press to document stories through the eyes of young creatives through a series of illustrations.


This project seeks to understand how people are making sense of their lives as they are being transformed by the pandemic.


This storytelling initiative is part of UNESCO’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is meant to put the spotlight on young people 


On this page you will find narrative responses to the pandemic that have originated in Australia, Turkey, China, Brazil and Rwanda.

Collective Projects

COMMUNITIES 2020 | Rose Rickford, PhD at University of York

Rose Rickford collects narratives from members of community organisations to shine a light on UK communities in 2020.


A collaborative investigation on housing conditions and wellbeing in times of COVID19 containment.

CORONAVIRUS LOST & FOUND | Independent project

Many people have suffered significant losses throughout the pandemic, and Coronavirus Lost and Found is an archive for those losses, big or small.

GREAT DIARY PROJECT | Independent project

Originally launched in 2007, the Great Diary Project is now collecting diary entries during the COVID-19 pandemic.

JOURNALS OF A PANDEMIC | Independent project

A project collecting journal entries of life under COVID-19, gathering personal impressions and experiences of the pandemic.


A project taking creative writings from systemic people across transdisciplinary communities.

®TIMES SHIFTING | Imagining History Programme UK

Created and guided by Alan Caig Wilson, Elizabeth Ferretti and Dr Dina Gusejnova, Times Shifting brings together young writers to explore the living history of our time.


This project gathers personal stories from persons with disabilities about the impact of COVID-19 on their lives.


An Instagram project by a group of photographers in Spain. They collect visual narratives to document daily life during pandemic.

Individual Projects


Kathy Feest writes every day about personal experiences of lockdown in Bristol.


In episode 13, Anthea Lesch focusses on her experience of adjusting lockdown in Cape Town, South Africa.

Covid-19 and the global intensification of inequalities: An e-symposium

Joint event between CNR and UEL’s Centre for Social Justice and Change: free registration at Eventbrite (link below!)

Covid-19 and the global intensification of inequalities: An e-symposium

Friday July 3, 2020, 3-4.30pm

Centre for Social Justice and Change, and Centre for Narrative Research, University of East London



Chair: Dr. Meera Tiwari

Presentations on and discussion about Covid-19 and its effects on economies, livelihoods, education and health, in relation to women, poor communities, and HIV positive people, in India, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria, Zambia, and the UK.

Presenters: Elaine Unterhalter (UCL), Sanny Mulubale (University of Zambia), Adriana Prates (Federal University of Bahia), Corinne Squire (UEL), Meera Tiwari (UEL), and Alan Whiteside (Balsillie School of International Affairs/Wilfred Laurier University).

To attend, please book here on Eventbrite and you will then receive your invitation:


Elaine Unterhalter is Professor of Education and International Development at the Institute of Education, UCL. She is also the Co-Director of the Centre for Education and International Development. Prof Unterhalter will be drawing on her extensive research in South Africa and Nigeria to reflect on how the Covid pandemic has impacted education for the poorest cohorts and girls in those countries.

Dr Sanny Mulubale is a University of Zambia lecturer and researcher who obtained a PhD from UEL as a Commonwealth Scholar. Adriana Prates has extensive experience as a community health worker, researcher and activist, and is completing a PhD at the Federal University of Bahia, Salvador, brazil. Corinne Squire is Professor of Social Sciences and Co-Chair, Centre for Narrative Research, University of East London. Sanny, Corinne and Adriana will be talking about their research on Covid-19 and the intensification of lived HIV inequalities in Brazil, the UK and Zambia.

Prof Alan Whiteside is CIGI Chair in Global Health Policy, School of International Policy and Governance, Wilfrid Laurier University and Balsillie School of International Affairs, Waterloo, Canada, and is currently on sabbatical at UEL. He will be talking about the Covid-19 responses in South Africa and how people living with HIV are being affected.

Dr. Meera Tiwari is Reader in Global Development at UE where she leads the EADI accredited Masters in NGO and Development Management. She will situate the complex impact of Covid-19 in India within her extensive research on livelihoods and multidimensional poverty in India.

TCRU-CNR Graduate Research Seminar June 2020 Hidden in plain sight: Exploring Notting Hill Carnival’s narratives of rights, resistance and being Michelle Harewood, University of East London

Tuesday 9 June 2020, 5–6.30pm 

Audio file of the seminar:

From the 1500’s, captives from Africa were taken to the Americas and enslaved by Europeans. To dehumanise them, attempts were made to erode their culture, religion, and language. Their traditional forms of communication were forbidden and their sense of self forcibly eroded. The enslaved people used these same cultural resources in resistance. Knowledge was encoded and transferred through the generations using oral, artistic, and performance traditions. This was a fight to keep history, culture, and identity alive; it was a fight to remain human. Subsequently, Caribbean carnival became a propagator for this knowledge.  As a decolonial project it is a space for silenced voices to be heard. Narratives of Notting Hill Carnival are used to explore hidden expressions of rights, resistance and being present within Caribbean carnival arts and performance.

Biographical notes Michelle Harewood is a PhD researcher at the University of East London. Her research focuses on political and counternarratives embedded in cultural practises. She has fifteen years of experience working globally in the fields of international development and human rights with non-governmental organisations. As an accredited trainer Michelle has educated professionals in the effective use of culture within these fields.


For further details, please contact Corinne Squire at c.squire@uel.ac.uk or Brenda Hayanga, Thomas Coram Research Unit graduate partner, brenda.hayanga.14@ucl.ac.uk . Details are also on the CNR blog https://centrefornarrativeresearch.wordpress.com and the CNR website

Audio files of keynote speeches from the conference ‘The Psychology of Global Crisis‘

Thanks to Maria Medved and the conference team for giving CNR permission to post the files here.

The Psychology of Global Crisis

May 20th – 30th 2020

#PGC2020 Virtual Conference

Conference website https://www.aup.edu/pgc

Molly Andrews

Global Crisis and the Failure of the Narrative Imagination


Michael Bamberg:

Uncertainty – Stress – Anxiety — Have we ever been Certain?


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xy-Zw4Q7oRU&list=PLHpABfBtH0u0zVzOdNZ1JN62wtIRICZVf&index=4

Sunil Bhatia

The Pandemic is a Mirror: Race, Poverty and Radical Care in Times of Crisis


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hiIlq9pl_4Q&list=PLHpABfBtH0u1R16bp8H-ZhJH_Vjgc_l4M&index=3

Jens Brockmeier

The Self and Its Crises


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eCrgpe8dfpg&list=PLHpABfBtH0u33181k6bH08Qx5A_koTGll&index=7

Erica Burman

Lockdown Vistas: Space, Time, Action


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-rOA9kw9atQ&list=PLHpABfBtH0u3NSdX3JOGgAdXQn1lYMyWr&index=4

Alessandra Fasulo

The Apocalypse and the Children. A Mediatic Journey Around the Space/Time Crisis in Family Homes


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=35LJJW-ZS68&list=PLHpABfBtH0u1R16bp8H-ZhJH_Vjgc_l4M&index=7

Michelle Fine & Puleng Segalo:

Critical Inquiry on Gendered Violence in the Global North and South: A Conversation Between Puleng Segalo and Michelle Fine


Mark Freeman

The (Al)lure of Narrative: Information, Misinformation, and Disinformation in the Time of Coronavirus


Roger Frie

Living with Vulnerability: Fear and Resilience in the Age of Coronavirus and Social Trauma


Kenneth Gergen:

Crisis and Consequence: The Relational Imperative


Ruthellen Josselson

Plotless stories and unthought knowns: Aspects of psychological life with Covid-19


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-i6OdJzqIQ&list=PLHpABfBtH0u2AhERNWWO9TVRg8JFkVFzl&index=2

Amia Lieblich

Covid-19 and the Person: Big and Small Stories


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bAKF_XNweHo&list=PLHpABfBtH0u3NSdX3JOGgAdXQn1lYMyWr&index=6

Dan McAdams

Stories of Crisis: Denial, Redemption, and Radical Acceptance in the Time of Covid-19


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omQxN-oWru8&list=PLHpABfBtH0u3NSdX3JOGgAdXQn1lYMyWr&index=2

Maria Medved

De-Individuation and De-Personalization in the Times of Covid-19


Hanna Meretoja:

Narrative Agency, Pandemic Imagination and the Story of War


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwYbwTd6Hr4&list=PLHpABfBtH0u2rygOIQ85Zb8F9OJ65LnkO&index=2

Ian Parker

“Viral Resistance”


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUf_9BPt1IY&list=PLHpABfBtH0u33181k6bH08Qx5A_koTGll&index=2

Brian Schiff

The Hermeneutics of Crisis and the Crisis of Interpretation


Q & A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FndKhNYTZM&list=PLHpABfBtH0u0O2jx502Eln4F1bE2eZPSl&index=4

Corinne Squire:

Curves and Numbers, Silence and Noise: Counteracting Covid-19 Narratives


Resources on political narratives by Molly Andrews

“The Promise and Limits of Political Forgiveness”

Inaugural Lecture of Erkko Visiting Professor
in Studies on Contemporary Society

22 October 2019


Although there is widespread agreement with the argument that Hannah Arendt made more than half a century ago, that forgiveness is ‘one of the human faculties that make social change possible’, beyond this, there is little consensus of what it means. Applying a narrative structure to this discussion, there is a lack of clarity around questions of who, what, where, when, and why to forgive. This paper will explore the politics of forgiveness in East Germany, where these issues have been hotly contested for more than twenty-five years.  The data examined in this article suggest that the fraught process of forgiveness embodies not consensus but contest, as people disagree on key questions such who has the right to forgive whom, for what, how long the window for the opportunity of forgiveness stays open, and even why these questions matter, not only for individuals but for the whole of society.  

Kollegium Talks: Panel on Ethics of Research Design 


12 March 2019

Speakers:  Molly Andrews (Professor of Political Psychology at University of East London & Jane and Aatos Erkko Professor at HCAS), Erika  Löfström  (Professor of Education, University of Helsinki),  Pirjo  Kristiina Virtanen (Assistant Professor of Indigenous Studies, University of Helsinki)  Moderation: Veronica  Walker Vadillo (HCAS Core Fellow) 

When academics intending to conduct responsible research prepare a research proposal, they have to pose numerous ethical questions, especially if they plan to do fieldwork. When you are working with live participants, have you considered if your work is in need of ethical clearance? Have you planned ways of obtaining informed consent? Have you considered your participants’ safety? How will you store the data to ensure anonymity when required? What about ownership of the data? Are your participants entitled to ownership? Have you considered the ethics of working with Indigenous communities and how your work can impact their lives?  

Pinnalla: The Fall of the Berlin Wall


November 14, 2019

Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, this discussion explores the effects of this momentous event which perhaps more than any other single occurrence has come to epitomize the change of the world order at the end of the 20th century. With interviews gathered from a longitudinal study with former East German activists, from a new Finnish non-fiction book on everyday life in East Germany, to a discussion of lives lost at the Berlin Wall, this event explores the significance of the fall of the Berlin Wall three decades later. The speakers are Professor Pertti Ahonen, University of Jyväskylä, Professor Molly Andrews, Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies and Kati Koivikko, journalist, photographer, nonfiction writer. The event is hosted by Kaisa Kaakinen, Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies.

Radical Therapist, in conversation with Dr. Chris Hoff

October 20, 2019


In episode #071 Dr. Chris Hoff and Professor Molly Andrews discuss the politics of forgiveness, and explore the relationship between narrative, apology, and time, and the moral and ethical boundaries between them. 

CNR-TCRU postgraduate seminar – 12 May 2020

CNR-TCRU Postgraduate Narrative Research Seminars 2019-2020                           

Organised by the Centre for Narrative Research (CNR), University of East London   

and the Thomas Coram Research Unit (TCRU), UCL Institute of Education        

           Online seminar:

We Are Not Ourselves All of the Time and We Are Not All of Ourselves at Any Time; Heteronyms, Personas and Contemporary Art

Jeroen van Dooren, Royal College of Art 

Tuesday 12 May 2020, 5–6.30pm

All welcome, particularly graduate students