Ursula Masson Memorial Lecture

Ursula Masson Each year on March 8th, International Women’s Day (or on the nearest week day), the Centre for Gender Studies in Wales presents a public lecture, the Ursula Masson Memorial Lecture, to celebrate the day and to commemorate its founder.

Dr Ursula Masson (1945-2008) was a much loved and highly esteemed senior lecturer in History at Glamorgan. She was also instrumental in founding Archif Menywod Cymru/Women’s Archive of Wales and its Roadshows. It is fitting, therefore, that the Memorial Lecture is given in her honour on International Women’s Day.

Ursula Masson Memorial Lecture 2017

‘“Delicate” and “troublous” questions: women teachers, gender issues and local education politics in south Wales, 1908-1928’ from Dr Sian Rhiannon Williams

Set against the background of the emergence of the feminist National Federation / Union of Women Teachers and the growing dominance of the labour movement in local politics, the lecture focuses on events in Aberdare and Rhondda before and after the First World War. Here, debates over the marriage bar, equal pay and other gender issues fuelled the activism of women teachers and inspired unity, but also exposed divisions and tested loyalties, thus creating tensions which reverberated more widely.

Dr. Sian Rhiannon Williams has published several articles and chapters on aspects of women’s history in Wales since she contributed to Our Mothers’ Land edited by Angela V. John (UWP, 1991). She is particularly interested in industrial south Wales and co-edited Struggle or Starve: Women’s lives in the south Wales valleys between the two World Wars (Honno Press, 1998) with Carol White. Her other work has focused on the social history of the Welsh language and on education. The majority of her career has been spent working with trainee history teachers and research students at Cardiff Metropolitan University. She is joint editor of the Gender Studies in Wales Series (UWP), Welsh medium editor of Llafur and a member of Archif Menywod Cymru / Women’s Archive of Wales.

The lecture will take place in the Moot Court, TC13, at 6pm to be followed by a wine reception and buffet in TC30 (the Zobole Room) and the university museum’s art gallery space, Oriel y Bont, from 7.15pm.

This lecture is free and open to all, but tickets are limited. Please RSVP to Dr Ruth Gaffney-Rhys to reserve your ticket.


Past events

Dr Kirsti Bohata: ‘Industrial Fiction by Women Writers in Wales, 1880-1914’ (2016)
Neil Evans: We are a Happy Company: The Culture of Women’s Movements in Wales (2015)
Prof Katie Gramich: The Soldier’s Return (2014)
Prof. Karen Hunt: Only Connect’: Women’s Politics and the Everyday between the Wars (2013)
Prof. Jane Aaron: The Witch as Heroine in Welsh Gothic (2012)
Prof. Angela John: Rhonddaworld: Lady Rhondda’s Life Story, (2011)
Prof. June Hannam: Writing to History: Autobiographies of the first Labour Women MPs, (2010)
Prof. Deirdre Beddoe: Women and Change in Twentieth Century Wales (2009)

The Ursula Masson Memorial Lecture series is organised with the support of Archif Menywod Cymru/Women’s Archive of Wales and New Law Solicitors.