Teaching from the Margins*

During my studies, gender was very much at the heart of what fascinated me about history. My most important academic socialization happened when I and some fellow students started organizing a couple of public lecture series on gender studies during the 1990s in Münster in Germany. From all over Germany and beyond we invited the … Continue reading Teaching from the Margins*

Breaking through the silence – building a new community

#MeTooUniversiteit In the last few weeks the reality of (sexual) harassment, abuse of power and intimidation at Dutch universities has come stronger than ever into public consciousness via a series of articles reporting on several new studies. This has culminated in a powerful piece of investigative journalism which exposes systematic sexual harassment by a law … Continue reading Breaking through the silence – building a new community

A Clean Record – Fictions of Innocence in Academia

Prologue I would love nothing more than to leave my past experiences in academia behind me. The problem is that my past experiences are other peoples’ painful present. With the echoes of these experiences still residing in my body, I cannot ignore any more what stays hidden beneath the surface in the world around me. … Continue reading A Clean Record – Fictions of Innocence in Academia

Abuse of Power and Neoliberal Academia

As I follow the wave of #MeToo stories while hoping the movement is going to spill over to higher education, I find myself reflecting on the larger issue of the different forms in which power is abused in academia. Academia has changed quite radically in the last thirty years. What is the relationship between the … Continue reading Abuse of Power and Neoliberal Academia

How it Hits You, Again and Again

A Story from Academia, Part II When I wrote about my experience of being bullied in academia, I revisited the events that have hurt me to the point of nearly crushing me. I engaged in rethinking how it had affected me and how it had affected others around me. As I wrote down these memories … Continue reading How it Hits You, Again and Again

“These Things Can Break You”

A Story from Academia* My burnout happened three years ago, and it took me more than a year to recover from it. I had to stop working because I had panic attacks, sudden stomach aches and I often began to tremble and break into a sweat for no good reason. I realized at a certain … Continue reading “These Things Can Break You”

The Inhumane Superego

A German Cultural Heritage I just counted. More than half of my German friends has been in psychotherapy, once or even several times, myself included. Some of these friends tell me, that this actually holds true for everyone in their circle of friends. This, of course, does not have to mean much, or it could … Continue reading The Inhumane Superego