"Topics and issues that can inspire us all and open for conversations"
Meet the programme director of Gender Studies
Marta Kolankiewicz is programme director for the Master's Programme in Social Studies of Gender since 2017. Her main areas of interest include social justice and law, sociology of race and racism, feminist theories and postcolonial theories. In Kolaniewicz's previous research, she explored historical articulations of racism, antisemitism, Islamophobia and xenophobia, mainly in Sweden, Poland and Brazil. She has also worked with the issues of social justice, law and transitional justice.
Our interview with Marta
What is the most enjoyable part about teaching?
I treat teaching as a meeting with students around topics and issues that can inspire us all and open for conversations. We always use theoretical texts and empirical studies, sometimes also films and literary works, to guide us in these conversations. It is this meeting and these conversations—always unique—that are the most enjoyable part of teaching for me. They bring in something unpredictable and lead to new questions and new interpretations of the issues and texts with which I work. It is from these meetings and conversations that the knowledge emerges, both for the students and for me.
What is extra exciting and stimulating when teaching at the Graduate School is that students come from so many different contexts, both geographically and disciplinarily. This helps us to challenge definitions and understandings that we often take for granted.
What’s unique about this programme?
This program offers students the opportunity to receive a degree with a major in their social science and with specific focus on gender issues. A unique aspect of this program is the trans-disciplinarity among students and the faculty. This creates a special intellectual exchange—theoretical, methodological, thematical. Faculty members are gender specialists from all social sciences. The students get to enjoy lectures, seminars and discussions with teachers who employ a gender or feminist perspective on different types of data and from different disciplines, such as sociology, political science, geography and history.
The program works closely with Global Studies and Development Studies, which creates possibilities for interaction between these fields. In addition, Lund University is recognized as an international leader in the field of gender research and the strong tradition of equality work in Sweden provides a productive support for gender research.
What will students learn?
In the Social Studies of Gender Master Programme, students deepen their knowledge and understanding of gender and society. They will develop their ability to critically use the central theoretical perspectives in the field of gender studies and to analyze social processes and social inequalities. Issues of social justice are at the core of the programme, with focus on complex analyses of gender, class, sexuality and ethnicity in a global perspective.
Current international areas of gender research and feminist debates are addressed, including postcolonial feminist theory, queer studies and masculinities studies. Most importantly, our master students get an opportunity to develop their expertise in their own research for their master’s theses.
What kind of career is possible after pursuing this programme?
After graduation, our students pursue careers in public and private organizations, NGOs, academia and in social entrepreneurship. We believe that this program builds a solid foundation for students who wish to work for social justice from a range of platforms.