Why did you take part in the initiative Sexism in Danish Higher Education and Research in October 2020?
After 5 years of studying and 10 years of working in academia (at 4 different institutions) I was sick of witnessing various forms of sexual harassment and gendered discriminatory, degrading behaviors in work spaces that were meant for all of us. And I was frustrated of being rejected if I or others spoke up: no, its not like that here; no that was just a joke; no, you need to grow a thicker skin to survive in academia; you know, you should think carefully about your career if you want kids… Almost all examples I have experienced are between people at different hierarchical levels; where the person with formal power misuses this to get access to others’ bodies, to get their way, to take credit for others’ work, or to reproduce the discourses that privilege themselves, despite the effects that may have on others. And during all these years, I have been hurt myself by humiliation, but that is nothing next to the devastation and sorrow I have witnessed in others – mostly in junior positions – when they have been harassed or degraded either in a situation without any witnesses or when many have been there, but done nothing. Early on, I dreamt of becoming an academic who dared to speak up; who behaved with collegial respect no matter academic rank. Of course this has not been easy, and I too have done things, been silent and regretted it. So I am not glorifying myself, but taking this initiative is an important effort to do academia differently.