skip to main content

Women's Studies Association (NZ)/Pae Akoranga Wahine

Kia ora and welcome to the Women's Studies Association of Aotearoa/New Zealand.

Our aim is to promote women's studies by encouraging feminist research and scholarship, promoting women's studies courses and events, preserving feminist heritage and sharing the work of our members through publications, events and conferences.

As a feminist organisation, our commitment is to women's studies making an impact by reducing gender-based inequalities and leading to positive changes for women.

We acknowledge Te Tiriti o Waitangi as foundational to our work and we encourage diversity in our organisation and in women's studies.

See more about WSA(NZ) in About Us.

facebook logo

The Women's Studies Journal Graduate Prize for a Feminist Essay in 2015

The 2015 Women's Studies Journal Graduate Prize for a Feminist Essay, awarded by the Women's Studies Association, and administered by the editorial collective of the Women's Studies Journal has been presented to the author/s of a submitted essay that is considered by the judging panel to best represent feminist scholarship on the 2015 theme: gender-based violence in contemporary Aotearoa/ New Zealand.
Please see the latest Women's Studies Journal for the winning and runner-up essays.

Feminist Artwork
of the Month

'AS ABOVE, SO BELOW' is the third of a series of three commemorative sculptures by Helen Pollock, 2015. This work commemorates the New Zealanders who served at sea during World War One.

Helen Pollock, 2015, "AS ABOVE, SO BELOW"

Helen Pollock has been a practising sculptor in the Devonport area for over three decades. Her work addresses anthropomorphic, mythological and historical concerns.

"Looking back to see my way forward"

She has spent over the last ten years, as a result of 'unpacking' her father's involvement in the First World War, her interest has broadened into a more extensive study of the history of New Zealand's involvement in that war. Throughout this period, Pollock's personal life has focussed on the long term illness of a close family member, exposing her closely to the reality, and often invisibility, of sustained suffering and the inherent heroism that it seeds.

She has linked this personal experience to the enduring impact of war on the bodies and psyches of the combatants of war, to their families, and to our national and universal experience.

The outcome of this pathway has been a series of three commemorative sculptures.

The first of these, the sculpture installation Falls the Shadow, was originally shown at the Auckland War Memorial Museum for the 90th anniversary of the First World War Armistice. This work is now permanently installed at the in the heart of New Zealand's worst military tragedy, Passchendaele, in the Memorial Museum at Zonnebeke, Belgium.

A second commemorative work Victory Medal is currently touring provincial museums in New Zealand. In 2016, Victory Medal will travel by sea to Europe- and cross the countryside of France and Belgium to the battlefield towns of Arras, Messines and to a final installation at Le Quesnoy.

The culmination of these works is As Above, So Below. Sited permanently in the RNZ Navy Museum in Devonport, it expresses the sheer commitment of the New Zealanders at sea in the First World War; the reaching down to the depths and the drawing up of raw courage for the heroic ascent.

The Women's Studies Association is taking an active part in organising WW1 events with a focus on women's participation. A small group of the Auckland Organising Committee were delighted to attend the launch in mid April, in Devonport at the National Museum of the Royal New Zealand Navy of 'AS ABOVE, SO BELOW' .

Photo supplied by Helen Pollock as is much of the text.


Conference 2016

University of Auckland, Friday 2, Saturday 3 September 2016

Registration now open

Further details on fees and accommodation here

Conference theme:
Re/generation: New Landscapes in Feminism and Women's Studies

Call for Papers: (see full Call for Papers outlining conference theme, topics and processes as doc or pdf)

We invite submissions for papers, workshops, panel discussions, performances and artistic displays from academics, community-based women's groups, practitioners, activists, senior secondary school, graduate, and postgraduate students.

Deadlines for submissions are:

  • General Proposals: now extended to June 30th
  • PBRF-stream Proposals (an opportunity for full written papers to go through a double-blind peer-review process; of benefit to members within academic institution): April 30th, 2016
  • PBRF-stream written papers: June 30th, 2016

Queries to