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Laura Marshall

Laura Marshall

Laura Marshall is PhD candidate in the Department of Geography. Her interdisciplinary research interests intersect around questions of gender diversity, sexuality and urban space in the UK. As a researcher, Laura dedicated to creating scholar/activist projects that translate her theoretical, methodological and ethical commitments (grounded in intersectionality, inclusivity, feminism and queer and trans studies and politics) into a research praxis that has positive effects and influences beyond academia.

Alongside her doctoral research, Laura has worked with the UCL Urban Laboratory as a Research Assistant, on a project researching LGBTQI nightlife spaces in London from 1986 until the present, in collaboration with RAZE Collective and the Queer Spaces Network.

Currently Laura works as a teaching assistant on the Gender, Society and Representation MA and occasionally lectures on sexuality for the Urban Studies MSc at UCL. Since 2014 she has been an active volunteer with Gendered Intelligence. Additionally, Laura is on the steering committee for the UCL IAS Gender and Feminism Network, is affiliate of qUCL and the Urban Laboratory and the postgraduate representative for the RGS-IBG Sexuality, Space and Queer Research Group.

In/Forming Gender: Exploring gender diversity through the lived experiences of people with trans identities and histories in the UK

Supervisors: Professor Ann Varley (first), Dr Ben Campkin (second)

This project aims to explore gender diversity by collecting and contrasting personal narratives by women, men and non-binary people with trans identities and/or histories. As the title suggests, these narratives illustrate ways of thinking and being that form and inform how genders are lived and understood in relation to particular  socio-spatial contexts across the UK.  Through this project, I position a theoretical approach informed by strands of queer theory, transgender studies and phenomenology in dialogue with the verbal, written and visual narratives of people with trans identities and/or histories. In doing so, I am interested in thinking through points of dissonance and resonance between ways that trans peoples’ identities, corporealities and subjectivities have been theorised and lived, particularly how participants’ narratives speak to theory in instructive ways. Through this approach I seek to illuminate and critically engage with complexities relating to the spatialising of cisnormative and heteronormative gender regimes and the production and disruption of the hegemonic binary gender order through embodied socio-spatial relations.

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