Affect, Knowledge and Embodiment

AKE is a critical feminist arts/research workshop series (and zine!) brought to you by Dr Ash Watson, Dr Laura Rodriguez Castro and Dr Samantha Trayhurn.

In this series, we explore ways of practically extending critical and feminist social research with art – specifically photography, sociological fiction and zine making. These arts practices are valuable for opening up how we critically explore, analyse, collaborate on, and share our experiences and understandings of the social world.

The workshop involves short introductions to each method, followed by a practical workshop where participants collaboratively experiment to explore themes of affect, knowledge, and embodiment. We produce a zine on the day, a ‘curated sociology’ of photography, research writing and fiction interventions, to be published with Frances St Press. AKE Zine is a collaboratively produced critical feminist arts/research publication (ISSN 2651-8724 [Online]).

The most recent AKE workshop took place Tuesday February 18, 2020, at Melbourne University, hosted by the School of Political and Social Science and the HSIF. This workshop drew on excerpts from Gloria Anzaldúa and AnaLouise Keating’s this bridge we call home:

Previous workshops in this series have been held at the University of Melbourne in Melbourne, Australian National University in Canberra, Griffith University in Brisbane and Monash University in Melbourne.

Read volume three of AKE Zine here! Download a DIY print* version of volume three here! This was made on November 21, 2019, at Australian National University, hosted by the Gender Institute and School of Sociology. During this workshop we collaboratively drew from Quinn Eades’ chapter ‘Écriture matière: a text that matters‘.

Read volume two of AKE Zine here! Download a DIY print* version of volume two here! This was made on July 19, 2019, at the Griffith Centre for Social and Cultural Research in Brisbane. Making this volume we collaboratively draw on this lecture by Sara Ahmed.

Read volume one of AKE Zine here! Download a DIY print* version of volume one here! This was made on November 16, 2018, at Monash University in Melbourne. Making this volume we collaboratively drew on Audre Lorde’s essay The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House.

*print double sided and flip along the short edge.

The AKE workshop series is suitable for established social researchers as well as postgraduate students who are interested in a practical introduction to these arts/research methods. Participants do not need prior experience in these practices – just enthusiasm! If you’d like to bring AKE to your university, please get in touch at

Dr Ash Watson is a Research Fellow with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making and Society at UNSW Sydney. She is the creator and editor of So Fi Zine, and Fiction Editor of The Sociological Review.

Dr Laura Rodriguez Castro is a Vice-Chancellor Senior Research Fellow at Southern Cross University’s Faculty of Education. Her research focuses on Southern knowledges of decoloniality and feminisms, critical public pedagogies, participatory arts methods, memory studies and rurality. 

Dr Samantha Trayhurn is a writer with a Doctorate in Creative Writing from Western Sydney University. Her work has been published in Overland, Westerly, eTropic, Hecate, Scum Mag and others. Her novel, The Curlew, was recently longlisted for the Hawkeye Publishing manuscript prize. She is the editor of Pink Cover Zine.

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