academic precariat early career researcher

Permanent academic posts at Irish universities are as rare as hen’s teeth and many early career researchers are forced to accept hourly paid teaching work. The pay they receive does not cover preparation time, responding to student queries and doing administrative work required by the department. Hourly paid teaching work also does not entitle you to sick leave or holidays. If you don’t show up, you don’t get paid. You are also not given enough teaching hours to make up a monthly salary, which means…Continue Reading “4 ways to improve conditions for hourly paid teaching staff”

This isn’t going to be a neat ‘how to beat depression in 5 easy steps’ post because there’s no such thing as an easy way out of a major mental health episode. It’s a slow hard slog unfortunately. As I’ve written about how it feels to be in the grip of depression, and it seemed to resonate with others, I thought I talk a little bit about what I’ve been doing these past few months to get my life back on track and feel better….Continue Reading “6 Ways to improve your Mental Health”

metoo

As #MeToo was making the rounds online and I was reading stories from friends and strangers, I thought to myself, how lucky am I not to have experienced horrendous sexual assaults or harassment. Sure, I’ve been flashed as a kid by a stranger on my way home from primary school. Of course I’ve had some old fella on the bus grope my ass. A flirtatious taxi driver locking his car doors on me, telling me how pretty I am and asking if I was single…Continue Reading “#MeToo”

Maybe it’s just a slump I keep telling myself, maybe I just need to rest more. I seem to be tired all the time. I probably need to stay at home and do nothing. But money is running out and I’m not applying for work. In fact, I’m doing almost no work at all, even the things I thought I really enjoy. A good routine is needed, no wonder I feel fatigued when I’m up all night, sleeping till midday. But getting up at a…Continue Reading “Depression – How did I suddenly get here?!”

twitter communication

There are a lot of opinions and articles out there on the impact of social media on human communication and mental wellbeing. I’m not sure whether this impact is sometimes overstated and would agree with Noam Chomsky who has argued that there have been far more wide reaching inventions than social media that have been impactful on human life and behaviour. However, this isn’t really what I want to discuss in this post. Instead I want to focus on something I’ve noticed recently regarding how…Continue Reading “In the eye of the Twitter storm”

blogging creativity

How do you make a living from something you enjoy without compromising your creativity? How do you find a balance between being creative and authentic while at the same time staying productive and reaching an audience? These are the questions I’ve been pondering on recently as I’ve resurrected my blog and started writing more regularly. When I started blogging about 2 years ago, it was mainly as a project to keep myself busy between finishing my PhD and figuring out my next career move. I…Continue Reading “The blogger creativity conundrum”

feminism

As I saw #FeministsAreEverywhere trending on Twitter ahead of the AGM of the National Women’s Council of Ireland tomorrow 8 June 2017, asking people to comment on why they are feminists, I was wrecking my head to come up with a good response. But somehow I couldn’t think of anything. I guess I’ve always felt like I’ve been a feminist but I never really questioned it or was able to pin point a moment when I decided to become one. I started looking back on…Continue Reading “Why I am a feminist”

singledom

For most of my adult life I have been single more often than I have been in a relationship. I’m fine with that. I stopped agonising over my relationship status quite a while ago. Maybe one day my knight in shining armour will show up at my door asking to join me on the couch for Dominos and Netflix. And if that doesn’t happen, at least I can have all the pizza to myself then. Being single can have its advantages. It’s great to be…Continue Reading “The pros and cons of serial singledom”

suze randall

Model, photographer and director Suze Randall was one of the first women behind the lens in the porn and adult entertainment industry. As the first female staff photographer for Playboy and Hustler, she was a trailblazer in a male dominated field. Born in Worcester, England in 1946, Suze considered herself a bit of a tomboy and says ‘she was shy as a girl but quite good as a boy.’ Her parents encouraged her to flaunt authority, no doubt an attitude that helped her in her…Continue Reading “History’s Rebel Girls – Suze Randall”

The Netflix documentary Hot Girls Wanted: Turned On is a spin off series of the 2015 documentary of the same title. It sets out to explore some aspects of the porn industry and also delves into how sex and dating have changed in a digital age. The original feature length documentary received some criticism for its generally negative and unbalanced portrayal of the porn industry. Therefore, filmmakers attempted to show the good and bad sides of adult entertainment in their follow up six part series,…Continue Reading “Review – Hot Girls Wanted: Turned On”