How to Ruin Dinner
How to Ruin Dinner
HTRD: Episode #31: Dr. Emily Maiden

HTRD is thrilled to begin our 2021 Fall series of discussions on activism with Assistant Professor of Political Science and Public Administration at UNF, Emily Maiden, Ph.D.

Dr. Maiden specializes in human rights in Sub-Sahara Africa, where she has studied gender issues and African Women’s naked protest movements. But as she explains in this conversation, human rights include everything from climate issues to religion. We begin with a review of her educational journey from the University of Louisville to Japan and Notre Dame to Africa. She explains her choice to forgo her initial dream of joining the foreign service for an academic career where she freely explores peace and justice issues.

With her bona fides firmly established, we move to a workable definition of activism. We explore the practices of protests she observes in Africa, especially women’s use of nakedness to shame and curse those who choose violence and war as solutions to the problems that plague communities all over the continent. Dr. Maiden explains the tightrope African Chiefs walk as they try to navigate the many political and social issues that demand their attention.
Dr. Maiden leaves us with three recommendations

1. “Pray the Devil Back to Hell”

This is a film about the courageous women of Liberia as they confront the warlords who are destroying their country.

2. “City of Joy”
The 1992 film is about Indian women recovering from the trauma of rape.

3. “I Am Femen”
This film is about women across Europe protesting topless to secure their voices in a political system steeped in patriarchy.

Dr. Maiden’s academic degrees include:
Ph.D. (2019) University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN MA (2016) University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN MA (2014) University of Louisville, Louisville, KY
BA (2011) University of Louisville, Louisville, KY

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