The Team

Cultivate is run by a rotating editorial collective. Our team work fluidly across Administration, Social Media, Design and Creative Editorial roles.

The current team are:

Sanna Eriksson, Co Editor-in-Chief

Sanna completed her BA and MA in East Asian Studies at the University of Helsinki, Finland. She has also studied at EIUC (Venice) and Utrecht University (The Netherlands). She has studied Mandarin at Fudan University (Shanghai) and at NTNU (Taipei). Sanna worked at the Embassy of Finland (Beijing), the European Commission (Brussels), and the University of York before being awarded an ESRC 1+3 scholarship to undertake a PhD in Women’s Studies at CWS in 2019. Sanna is currently in the third year of her PhD which explores contemporary Chinese motherhood, with a particular focus on televisual representations, public discourses and women’s individual experiences. She is excited to be on the editorial team of Cultivate and thus have the opportunity to engage with the feminist early career researcher community.

Daisy McManaman, Co Editor-in-Chief

Daisy McManaman (she/her), is a 3rd year PhD student at the Centre for Women’s Studies. Her PhD research re-analyses representations of women in Playboy, seeking to shift the lens from Hugh Hefner (founder of Playboy and until now the main focus of the majority of texts on Playboy), and onto the women who consumed, produced and featured in Playboy content. Daisy comes from an art based background and holds an MFA in Fiber and Material Studies from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a BA (hons) in Fine Art Photography from the Glasgow School of Art. Within her research Daisy utilises creative methods, with a particular focus on self-portraiture, as an act of reclaiming the imagery found in Playboy, as well as a tool to explore first hand how it feels to produce and pose in nude photographs. Daisy is also the co-founder of the Re-making Research Network. 

Lizzie Merrill, Co Editor-in-Chief

Lizzie Merrill is a PhD student in the Centre for Women’s Studies, supported by WRoCAH/AHRC. With a background in practice-based fine art, Lizzie’s project explores how creative methods can express our embodied experiences of illness. Lizzie currently holds a BA in Fine Art from Central St Martins and an MSt in Women’s Studies from Oxford University. Her work has recently been published in the Polyphony as well as Aspectus (Journal of Visual Culture). Outside of all things academic, Lizzie loves to make, paint, build, sew and walk three unruly dogs. Lizzie is incredibly excited about this special creative issue of cultivate and can’t wait to engage with and illuminate Cultivate’s brilliant creative submissions. 

Aakanksha Singh

Aakanksha Singh is a third-year PhD researcher at the English and Related Literature Department. Her research focuses on unravelling representation of queer women characters as “quietly political” in contemporary Indian writing. Aakanksha loves to pretend she knows how to read, garden, cook, live, be a feminist and write a poem and so is really excited to read creative submissions for Cultivate 2023 Special Issue! 

Alice Wilson

Alice Wilson is a PhD researcher at the University of York writing about women who build their own tiny houses as a way to resist capitalism and patriarchy. Her work has appeared in Ruminate Magazine, the Apple Valley Review, ZinDaily, and Livina Press. Her flash fiction features in the Sonder Press Best Small Fiction 2022 anthology. Her journalism has been published in The Guardian, The Independent, QueerAF, and Diva amongst others. 

Kate Keeble

Kate is an inquisitive and assertive feminist. She is currently studying a double MA at the Centre for Women’s Studies via the GEMMA programme. Kate has accomplished a postgraduate diploma in creative writing. She enjoys prose poetry with a cuppa rooibos and some shortbread biscuits. Her educational journey is walking an autoethnographic pathway to exploring women’s agency in a patriarchal society. 

Madelaine French

Madelaine French is a PhD researcher in the Department of Sociology at York. Prior to joining York, she completed her MRes in Sociology at Portsmouth University where she explored the transitional identities of female bikini bodybuilders. Her research interests include embodiment, gender identity, chronic illness, healthism, and reproductive healthcare. Her PhD explores the intersecting embodied experiences of involuntarily childless women with Endometriosis as socially constructed expectations of womanhood are negotiated and(re)imagined. Before completing her MRes she gained her Bachelor of Arts degree in Fashion Photography from The London College of Fashion, which lead to a rewarding career as a womenswear buyer. Clothing design, printmaking and photography still play a huge role in her life. She is passionate about combining the creative and academic and looks forward to working with Cultivate to spotlight feminist voices.

Marieke Wierenga

Born and raised in Germany, Marieke (she/her) studied Archaeology and History at the University of Aberdeen and Universiteit van Amsterdam before moving to England in 2022. At the University of York, she started an Erasmus Mundus MA in Women’s and Gender studies (GEMMA), which will be continued at the Central European University in Vienna in 2023/24. She is interested in the way arts-based research, autoethnography and embodied knowledge contribute to a relational understanding of the world and to social and environmental justice by exploring vulnerability, questions of home/belonging or trauma and intersections of racism, sexism, homophobia and ableism. Marieke loves to travel and spend time in nature where she tries out (and fails at) various outdoor activities, but also gets inspiration for occasional projects related to creative writing, dancing, music or photography. She is really excited to see this year’s submissions to Cultivate and keen to experience and promote the power of feminist storytelling.

Rhuan Barcellos

Rhuan Barcellos is a MA student at the Centre for Women’s Studies and Utrecht University. He is doing the Erasmus Mundus Master’s Degree in Women’s and Gender Studies. Rhuan joined the centre after completing a BA in International Relations from the Fluminense Federal University and a period of academic mobility at the University of Porto. Queer studies and creative research methods are his main interests. As a voracious reader and writer, Rhuan looks forward to appreciating the exciting feminist and queer contributions submitted to Cultivate. 

Renny Iskander

Reny Iskander is gender researcher who did her MA in women and gender studies in the university of York and university of Bologna. As an Egyptian woman, she is interested in gender research in the SWANA region, her main topics of interest are feminist writing as resilience, class and gender, minority writes and gender justice. She recommends reading autobiographical works of Arab women such as Latifa Al Zayat, Huda Shaarawi, Radwa Ashour and Arwa Salih, as a means of grasping their reality in their own words. 

Rupsa Nag

Rupsa Nag is a student of Gender Studies at UoY and Utrecht University. She has been involved with Cultivate as the associate editor since last year. A lot of their previous engagements have been around writing, translation, visual and performing arts, research and archives. She loves stories, photography, music, food and is happiest on days she crosses paths with friendly dogs.

Yanrui Cui

Yanrui Cui is a PhD candidate at the Department of English and Related Literature. Her research interests include Victorian fiction, women’s writing, psychoanalysis and narrative studies. Before arriving at York, Yanrui completed her MA and BA in English literature at Peking University, China. She has also completed a double BA degree programme in philosophy from PKU. Her feminist icons include Simone de Beauvoir and Charlotte Brontë, whose works are the focus of her current research. Yanrui is looking forward to learning about the current trends in feminist studies while working with Cultivate.

Caterina Lisi

Caterina Lisi is an international MA student in the Erasmus Mundus project GEMMA – Women and Gender Studies at the Centre for Women’s Studies and the University of Bologna (Italy), where she will obtain a double-degree. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from the University of Florence (Italy), she developed a keen interest in gender issues and feminist philosophy. Currently, she is working on her final dissertation, which explores the intersection of feminism and veganism within the realm of ecofeminist theory. Her research interests include ecofeminism, post-structural feminist theory, feminist philosophy, and gender-based violence.

Alice Parkington

Alice Parkington is an MA student with the Centre for Women’s Studies where she is working on a dissertation about the rock art of Southern Africa. Originally from Cape Town, her research interests currently involve non-traditional archives, heritage, ghosts and feminist practices relating to memory. She previously completed an undergraduate degree majoring in History and Gender Studies and post-graduate Honours degree in Gender and Transformation at the University of Cape Town with the Department of African Feminism. She loves the Cederberg Mountains, wearing Dr Martens and dancing. Alice joined Cultivate knowing it would be an opportunity to engage with other feminists in the UK outside of the university and looks forward to being part of the creative team behind Cultivate.

Mahasweta Podder

Mahasweta is studying for a joint Masters in Gender Studies from Utrecht University and the University of York. Her research interests are Comparative literature, mainly focussing on Bengali, Urdu, Hindi and Tamil texts; Translation Studies; Digital Humanities; Postcolonial Theory and Decolonial Practice. When not writing or reading, Mahasweta prefers to spend quality time daydreaming, thinking about an alternative reality. She loves to go out for walks, stargaze, moon gaze, interact with babies. Almost forgot to say, she love to love.

Harriet Foreman

Harriet is an ESRC funded PhD candidate at the Centre for Women’s Studies. Her research project is titled ‘Living in the grey zones: the experiences of the wives of Foreign and Commonwealth personnel in the British army’. Harriet is interested in exploring the intersections of militarism, postcolonialism, and gender in the UK today through creative ethnographic methods. Harriet has an MA in Women, Violence and Conflict and an MA in Social Research. Outside of research, she enjoys cooking and running.

Caroline Duggan

Caroline Duggan is a first year GEMMA MA student, lover of slam poetry, burlesque and manifestos. Her current research project is studying bisexual literature and it’s impact on queer teens.

Previous Editors

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