Portraits of Women Fellows in the Hall

by Rachel Smith

For the month of May, Pembroke is covering the traditional portraits in its dining hall with photographs of female Fellows.

The exhibition, which starts today, is part of PemWomen@30 – a project to mark 30 years since women students arrived at Pembroke.


Twelve Fellows have been selected to have their photos included. The women depicted are a selection of some of the longest serving Fellows, together with some of the most recent appointments. Among them are current, emeritus and honorary Fellows.

Professor Loraine Gelsthorpe is Graduate Tutor at Pembroke, Chair of PemWomen@30 and is one of the women depicted in the exhibition.

She says: ‘Pembroke cannot avoid its history, having been founded by a woman – Marie de St Pol, Countess of Pembroke –  then not having admitted women to study in the College until 1984, but there is genuine concern to establish gender equality and to think more broadly about diversity and inclusivity. This photographic initiative, covering old Masters, captures the spirit and aspirations of our year-long celebration of thirty years of women being admitted as students in the College.’

Share (1)This exhibition has been organised by undergraduate and graduate students, with the support of the Fellows. Dr Rosalind Polly Blakesley has been overseeing the project.

She says: ‘Pembroke College has a deep commitment to the recruitment and support of female students, fellows and staff, and to the promotion and well-being of women in university life more broadly. This exhibition signals that commitment, at the same time as it offers the opportunity to reflect on gender disparity in the past.’

The project will use photographs taken by Emeritus Fellow Ian Fleming (1956), who since 1963 has photographed every Pembroke Fellow soon after their election to the College fellowship.

The Fellows depicted in the exhibition are as follows:
Dr Joanna Bellis, Harry F. Guggenheim Research Fellow
Dr Rosalind Polly Blakesley, Reader in Russian and European Art
Dr Barbara Bodenhorn, Emeritus Fellow
Dr Katrin Ettenhuber, College Teaching Officer in English
Professor Loraine Gelsthorpe, Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice
Professor Sylvia Huot, Professor of Medieval French Literature
Dr Iza Hussin, Lecturer in Asian Politics
Dr Lauren Kassell, Reader in History of Science and Medicine
Dr Chloe Nahum-Claudel, Trebilcock-Newton Trust Research Fellow
Mrs Susan Stobbs, Emeritus Fellow
Dr Sathiamalar Thirunavukkarasu, Emeritus Fellow
Dr Anna Young, Maudslay-Butler Research Fellow