22.11.2022 Intersectionality Beyond Eurocentrism Minisymposium

Tuesday, November 22, at 14.00 – 18.00 (Eastern European Time (EET), UTC+02:00).

The event will be held online on Zoom. Registration has now closed.

How has intersectionality been adopted as a research concept and theoretical approach globally? How are the political dimensions of intersectionality understood in different societies? What are the challenges, resistance, and criticisms regarding the application of intersectionality? How do our research environments affect our understanding of the concept and its applicability? We are organizing this symposium on Zoom to broaden our understanding of intersectionality beyond a Eurocentric lens.


14.00 – 14.15 Welcome and opening words /Anna Rastas and Iida Pöllänen, Co-Directors of InReNet

14.15 – 14.45 Dr. Rashmi Nair: Intersectionality in Social Psychology: Scope and Challenges in the Indian context

14.45 – 15.15  Zahra Edalati: Capacities of “Intersectionality” as a Theory and as a Methodology in Iran and in studying Iranian Women’s Rights Activism

15.15 – 15.30 Discussion

15.30 – 15.45 Break

15.45 – 16.15 Dr. Abena Kyere, presentation co-authored with Dr. Deborah Atobrah: African Futures, Intersectionalities and Gender Discontent

16.15 – 16.45 Dr. Sharmla Rama: What do South African Universities Look Like When Viewed from an Intersectional Perspective of Hierarchies and Power Positions Attached to Different Social Positionings? Reflecting on the University of KwaZulu, South Africa

16.45 – 17.00 Discussion

17.00 – 17.30 Dr. Sonjah Stanley Niaah: Intersections’ of Sound, Body and Citizenship in the African Diaspora

17.30 – 17.40 Discussion

17.40 – 18.00 Concluding discussion and plans for future collaboration /Iida Pöllänen and Anna Rastas

Keynote speakers

Keynote speakers of the symposium come from India, Iran, Ghana, South Africa and Jamaica:

Dr. Rashmi Nair is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Ashoka University, India. She received a Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Clark University, USA and a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Christ University, India. Her research has focused on experiences of group-based victimization based on various social identities such as caste, religion, and gender. She examines the implications of people’s beliefs linked with these experiences for intergroup relations and policy outcomes.

Zahra Edalati is a doctoral researcher at Tampere Peace Research Institute (TAPRI), Tampere University, Finland. She is currently working on transnational networks of solidarity among Iranian women in Iran and in the diaspora. In her doctoral dissertation project, she examines how women with diverse political, ideological, and identity backgrounds can form coalitions together. Her dissertation asks:

What intersectional approaches to Iranian women’s unity exist? What impact do such identities, ethnicities, and religious ideologies have on solidarity?

Dr. Abena Kyere holds a Ph.D. in African Studies and is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Gender Studies and Advocacy at the University of Ghana. Her research is rooted in understanding the positioning of women in both religion and popular culture and the ways in which they create and recreate problematic as well as empowering spaces for women. She is on the editorial team for Feminist Africa and a co-editor for the Critical Investigation into Humanitarianism in Africa blog.

Her presentation is co-authored with Dr. Deborah Atobrah, Senior Research Fellow, Director of the Centre for Gender Studies, University of Ghana.

Dr. Sharmla Rama is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. She is also the Interim Head of Academic Monitoring and Support in the College of Humanities. Her research interests are in the Sociology of Childhood, Sociology of Youth and more recently Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Some of the theoretical and thematic areas she has written on relate to social exclusion, intersectionality, the teaching of Global South theories and its relevance and appropriation to understanding and examining social phenomena in South Africa.

Dr. Sonjah Stanley Niaah is a senior lecturer in Cultural studies and a Deputy Dean in Marketing & Resource Mobilisation at the University of the West Indies, Jamaica. She is pioneer in the terrain of Caribbean Cultural Studies and a leading author, teacher and researcher on Black Atlantic performance geographies, popular music, and culture.She is also a Member of the International Scientific Committee in UNESCO’s project, titled “Routes of Enslaved Peoples: Resistance, Liberty and Heritage.” For  more information you can go to her blog and her Academia page.