A Journey to the Salt Castle…

Posted in: Travel, work on 21 September, 2018 by Amelia

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Last week I visited a city I have not been to for ten years – well, I say visited; I didn’t see any of the centre nor the old town because I was working, but I had an adventure getting lost in the surrounding villages finding an alternative route to Google Maps’ suggestion to walk on the highway…. Really!

Apart from that adventure, it went well. I cannot share exactly what I was working on, but I has a nice view of the mountains, good food, a comfy hotel bed, and a little time to get nostalgic about when I lived in a nearby city. So where was I? Well, based on the translation software of a friend I emailed, who is starting to learn German and asked me to write in that language, I was in a salt castle 😀 Where? 😀 Salzburg….which does indeed translate to salt castle, but the one there is very definitely made of stone…

I am back home now, but off again on Thursday, this time to Brno for a weekend of films and cat cuddles. But first, back to the books.


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Theory and Practice

Posted in: Activism, Reflections, Studies, work on 14 September, 2018 by Amelia

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So, I mentioned that I passed an essay recently, but what was it about? Having had a free choice of topic, and realising that my previous subject was not closely enough related to feminist theories, I decided to use my own work experience and choose Holocaust education. I especially liked this, as when I studied Human Rights we always considered theories in the abstract, which I found difficult to understand and also frustrating; rights are important to put into practice, no?

In Gender Studies, theories can also be very difficult to understand, but my professors have always acknowledged the academia-activist divide, and encouraed my co-students and I to use our own ideas and experiences against it. It has led to some really interesting projects with several of my colleagues using theories at work and one even calling for action in a TedxTalk. I am always inspired, and took this latest opportunity to address the field of Holocaust education, which made me nervous as I know it is highly controversial, and some of my colleagues might be angry at the idea of changing pedagogical methods. Luckily, my professor was in favour of my discussion on posthumanism and intersectional vnd genalogical approaches, which help link the Holocaust to the wider context and our would today, and whilst conducting a tour and leading a discussion at a former concentration camp memorial two weeks ago, I took the chance to try and put this into practice. It is difficult to work in isolation, especially with limited time and resources, but the students seemed receptive, and I look forward to continuing in this direction.

Some say that Gender Studies is a useless degree that does not lead to a career, but I am pleased to say that this is very wrong 🙂


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Seventh time lucky…

Posted in: Studies on 11 September, 2018 by Amelia

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Last week I found out the result of one of my gender studies modules, and I was very happy to have passed, because it was the seventh opportunity to do so since I registered for the course. No, I did not fail six times previously, only once, but it still seems strange to say it like that.

So how did this happen? Basically I took the course in the autumn of 2016, and passed all of the assessments aside from the final essay. Because I was travelling around the time of the essay deadline in November, I decided to submit in January, but my husband was hospitalised and between the stress I missed the second deadline too. The next chance was in May, and I almost finished the piece before getting hit by a 24hr virus on the deadline day 🙁

Therefore I was obliged to re-register for the autumn 2017 session and repeat the other assignments, which was not too bad because it did increase my understanding of the theories. Given the dates of my internship for a different module I let the November date pass, then this time I was in hospital in January, and then left too little time to finish in May, having had two school-based exams the same week as the deadline. This time though, I submitted a rough draft, failing but opening up the door to the summer catch-up period, finally submitting a finished essay two weeks ago.

I have never been so satisfied to have passed a course, and all I can say is that if life gets in the way, keep going!


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Posted in: Activism on 7 September, 2018 by Amelia

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September 9th is election day in Sweden – for the government, region, and municipality.

The beauty of the system is that unlike in some states, anyone who is eligible to vote receives a voting card automatically in the post, so there’s no need to worry about forgetting to register. Only Swedish citizens can vote for the government, but anyone in the population register can vote locally and regionally, so it’s definitely a good idea to register at Skatteverket and secure your say!


Furthermore, if you cannot make the polling station on election day, you can even vote in advance at a number of venues – this applied to me as I’ll be in Germany on the 9th, so I went to Ung Puls in Ryd, which is directly opposite the Studentbostäder office. The process is quite simple – there are several pieces of paper laid out, with a different colour representing the government, region, and municipality. At each level for which you are eligible, you choose either a piece of paper marked with the name of a party only, or one with a list of candidates if you have a preference for an individual, go to a secret booth and cross a candidate if desired, then put the papers into envelopes and take them with your voting card and ID card to the staff.

That’s it! But I wonder what the results shall be….


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…and so does the city!

Posted in: Travel on 4 September, 2018 by Amelia

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In June, many of the roads in Linköping, especially those between campus and the city, were closed. It was a little annoying at first,but once the reason became clear, I was very much in favour: the city is becoming even more bike-friendly 🙂 There are now several separate cycle lanes, and many more under construction, making travelling much safer and more comfortable in general.


And given the amount of cyclists in Linköping – the pictured amount of bikes outside the library is quite normal – I’m sure these paths will be well used. Thanks local planners! Now if only they could go and do the same in Prague…


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Amelia Gackowska

Amelia Gackowska
Hej, my name is Amelia and I recently moved to Linköping to study the Master programme in Applied Ethics, as I thought it was about time to study the theories behind my activism!

When I am not studying you can find me teaching ballroom dancing, learning Swedish, up-cycling whatever I can find, or getting carried away debating politics into the early hours.

MA in Applied Ethics

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