NCRM NOVELLA – Upcoming Workshops and Lecture, March 2013

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Three exciting events NOVELLA is pleased to be hosting in March 2013.

On 20 March 13.00- 16.30 we will be hosting a workshop entitled ‘Observation: Looking at family Lives’ at the Mass Observation archive at the University of Sussex.  Places are extremely limited and early booking is recommended.

Observation: Looking at family Lives

The Mass Observation Archive specialises in material about everyday life in Britain. It contains papers generated by the original Mass Observation social research organisation (1937 to early 1950s), and newer material collected continuously since 1981. Linked to the NOVELLA (Narratives of Everyday Life and Linked Approaches) Study, which is based at the Thomas Coram Research Unit, Institute of Education, this half-day workshop provides an opportunity for researchers, at any stage of their career, to become more familiar with the Mass Observation Archive and the type of data it can offer when studying the everyday lives of families. Two short talks about the Mass Observation Archive, including its history and purpose, will be followed by a chance to look at data that focuses on different aspects of family life, including parenthood, food and the environment.

For further information and to book a place visit our online store:

On 8 March 13.00-16.00 NOVELLA will be hosting the following workshop and lecture by

Professor Maria Tamboukou from the Centre for Narrative Research, University of East London.

Room G16, 9-11 Endsleigh Gardens

The thick autonomy of archival research (Workshop) 

In recent years archival research in the social sciences is emerging as a vibrant field of qualitative research, but despite a relatively small body of literature that has been slowly amassing around it (see Stanley 2011, Valles et al 2011), it still remains a relatively underdeveloped field outside the humanities. In this workshop we will look into questions of archival sensibility in social sciences research and explore a range of methodological approaches, epistemological standpoints and concerns, as well as theoretical questions and issues.

Drawing on Casey’s influential suggestion about the ‘thick autonomy of memory’ (2000) the archive is configured not just as a discursively constructed memory space, but also as a material assemblage, a laboratory of memory with specific spatio/temporal rhythms that significantly influence mnemonic practices in the study and writing of memory. The workshop will draw on specific case studies from archival research that Professor Maria Tamboukou has conducted in a number of archives in the UK and abroad over the last ten years, informed by neo-materialist approaches in feminist science studies. (see Tamboukou 2010)

For further information and to book a place on this event please visit our online store:

Gendering the memory of work (Lecture)  – Drama Studio, Institute of Education 17.00-19.00

Over the past thirty years feminist theorists have drawn on women’s auto/biographical narratives to include them in the canonical texts of literary criticism, to rewrite social and cultural histories but also to understand and theorise the constitution of the gendered self in modernity. But if one looks into the rich body of scholarship around women’s auto/biographical narratives, there is very little theorisation on working women’s auto/biographies from a sociological perspective, although there is a substantial body of work in literary criticism (see Coiner 1995, Zandy1990). Even among the few notable exceptions (Hollis 2004, Stanley 1984, Swindells 1995) the seamstress seems to be a figure that has yet to be studied and analysed. It seems that working women in general and seamstresses in particular had very little time in their hands to write but did they really?

For further information and to book a place on this event please visit our online store:

For further information about the NOVELLA project and all our events please visit our website  or contact Rowena Lamb on 020 7612 6921 /


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