You may or may not have noticed that this week on campus all the buildings named after males have been renamed to female names. Why you ask? It’s blue stocking week. I must admit until last week I had never heard of Blue Stocking Week. Bluestocking Week is named for the first generations of university women of the 19th century. Whilst used as a derogatory term back then we proudly celebrate these pioneers who paved the way for women in higher education. If you are interested in reading more about the history then have a look on the NTEU webpage.
Blue Stocking Week has been used to not only celebrate women in higher education but also as an opportunity to focus on equality and women’s health issues, such as equality of pay, paid maternity leave, and domestic violence. This year we celebrate not only how far women have come but also what the road ahead holds for women in higher education. Professor Penny Jane Burke argues that whilst statistics show that women are accessing higher education in many countries at higher rates than males sheer numbers of enrollments are not the only factor to consider. She argues that other inequalities must be addressed including the under-representation of women from lower socioeconomic groups in higher education. You can read more about her arguments on this blog.
Changing the names of building on campus is a little fun and UON have more activities to celebrate Blue Stocking Week including movie screening, talks on women’s health issues and short story and poetry reading. Get the full details of what’s happening when here.