MA Candidates

Only those students who wished to have their profile on our website are included.

Nathan Flaig

Nathan Flaig is presently an MA student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. He received a BA(Hons.) in Communications Studies with a minor in Religious Studies from the University of Calgary in 2014. His past research analyzed the intersection between discourse, subjectivity, and popular culture, through the lens of gender performativity. Currently, he hopes to expand his research to encompass critical perspectives on masculinity and queer embodiment. Other areas of interest include: Asian religious philosophy, psychoanalytical theory, and poststructuralist theories of language, gender, and sexuality.

Brooklyn Fowler

Brooklyn is presently a MA student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies.  They completed their undergraduate studies in International Studies with an extended minor in Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies at Simon Fraser University with a semester away at Concordia University in Montréal.  Their research interests include labour law in Canada, deconstructing the gender binary, femininity studies and looking at informal community survivor support structures for survivors of abuse.  Brooklyn has a background in social justice activism and this is reflected in much of the academic work and research they focus on.  They intend to build off of this work in law or public policy work as a part of one of the many social justice organizations that make Vancouver such a dynamic city for social justice work.

Breanna Gray

Breanna is presently an MA student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies. She completed her undergraduate degree in the spring of 2016 with a BA from Simon Fraser University in Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies, a minor in Biological Sciences, and a Certificate in Performance Studies. She is secretary to the GSWS Graduate Caucus and Liaison to the undergraduate Student Union in order to promote effective communication and sharing of ideas and resources. She also is a Teaching Assistant within the GSWS department. Her research interests include public policy, queer ecologies, and creative writing; of particular focus are policies for queer and trans youth in correctional facilities and diverse representation in young adult literature. She hopes to return to her hometown of Calgary, Alberta, upon completion of her degree in order to work closely with the important social and art movements in development there.

Charis Lippett

Charis is an international GSWS MA student from the UK. She completed her BA in English and Creative Writing in Cardiff, Wales. Having grown up in the Middle East, Far East Asia, East Africa and Mainland Europe, Charis was exposed to a myriad of cultures, languages, and faiths that sparked her avid interest in post-colonial feminism. During her BA, she immersed herself in the writings of Jeanette Winterson, her creative dissertation being heavily influenced by Winterson’s bildungsroman Oranges are Not the Only Fruit (1985), and is interested in further exploring lesbian feminist perspectives in contemporary fiction.

Charis spent her summer in 2014 volunteering with the Abbotsford Youth Health Clinic as an intake worker, and in the future hopes to continue working in the lower mainland to create impartial, safe, and welcoming spaces in which young people can find general, mental, and sexual health services.

Lutfun Nahar

Lutfun Nahar is presently an MA student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies. Originally from Bangladesh, she completed her LL.B (Hons.) from the University of London as an external student in 1996 and was called to the Bar from Lincoln’s Inn, UK, in 1997. She did her LL.M in Lund University, Sweden, in the year 2012 with major on International Human Rights Law and Intellectual Property Rights Law. She has extensive work experiences of working as Law Lecturer, Legal Practitioner, Asst. Law Manager in Unilever Bangladesh Ltd., National Consultant of United Nations Development Programme and Assistant Attorney General in the Office of the Attorney General in Bangladesh. She has also been involved in community services as an Executive Member in Defence Officers Housing Society Council, Mohakhali, Dhaka – working voluntarily in Arbitration Sub-committee to resolve family and civil disputes within the society; as well as Area and Lake Beautification Sub-committee to plant trees, replace broken pavements, increase number of street lights and other improvements in the community. She has written articles in Law Journal of Bangladesh and newspaper columns regarding the laws on sexual harassment in Bangladesh, the right to education of the disabled children and access to internet a human right etc. Her research interests include: violence against women, disability studies, intellectual property rights, women and human rights, and gender analysis in policy studies.

Nathalie Lozano Neira

Nathalie Lozano Neira is an M.A. student in the department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies program. She completed her BA in 2011 at Simon Fraser University with a major in International Studies and a minor in Political Science. Nathalie has been involved in numerous community initiatives that work with immigrant and refugee youth at the local and national level. She currently works at Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISSofBC) in a program for newcomer youth called Multicultural Youth Circle (MY Circle) Program. Throughout her professional and community involvement, she has contributed to many research initiatives with immigrant and refugee youth communities and is an avid advocate for Participatory Action Research (PAR) and meaningful youth engagement practices. Funded by Metropolis BC and using PAR methodology, Nathalie was commissioned by ISSofBC to design a pre-departure orientation curriculum that she delivered to refugee youth in Damak, Nepal. Currently she is an active member of the Youth Advisory Team at the Vancouver Foundation and the Action Team, in which she advocates for policy recommendations that affect newcomer youth and their families. Using a feminist framework, Nathalie’s research will examine immigration policies as they affect refugee communities, with a strong focus on intersections of identities as well as linkages to aboriginal communities. In the future, she hopes to continue working with immigrant and refugee communities to do policy advocacy and bring awareness about the strengths migrant communities bring and the challenges they face in Canada.

Jamie Noulty

Jamie is presently a MA student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. He completed his undergraduate in Political Science with a Joint Major in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University. His research interests include gendered violence, masculinity, post-conflict, post-colonialism, and emerging men’s studies.

PhD Candidates

Sim Badesha

Sim Badesha is a PhD student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies at SFU. She completed her MA in Sociology with a specialization in Women's Studies at Lakehead University in 2015.  Sim's areas of interest include anti-racism, women's sexuality and gender, South Asian women, and feminist theories.

Barbara Bates

Barbara is seen knocking at the door of the University of al-Karaouine, Fez Morocco (founded in 859 and thought to be the oldest university in the world).  Barbara believes that scholastic pursuits should be accessible to people of any age and unrestrained by agism.  

Barbara is a PhD student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies at SFU.  She completed a BA of Anthropology at SFU in 2008 and an MA in Graduate Liberal Studies in 2012.  Barbara is the mother of two sons who are both graduates of SFU.  She has worked as an administrator in a family and criminal legal practice for over twenty years.  

Barbara's doctoral thesis will focus on second wave feminism and the 1960's social shift.

Robert Bittner

Robert Bittner is a PhD student in the department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies. He has a Bachelor's degree in English from SFU and a Master's in Children's Literature with a focus on queer sexualities, religion, and literature for young people from the University of British Columbia. Robert has several publications under his belt, including an article on trans youth in literature published with The ALAN Review (2010), a published annotated bibliography on sexuality and censorship in picture books in YAACING (a publication of the BC Library Association, 2011), and a forthcoming article on sex education being published in the Journal of LGBT Youth in October 2012. He has spoken on topics of genderqueer imagery in Children's and YA books at the Children's Literature Association (Boston, 2012), the Modern Language Association (Seattle, 2012), the Queer U Conference at UBC (2012), and the SouthWest Texas PCA/ACA Conference (Albuquerque, 2010).  He was a guest speaker on issues of censorship and sexuality at the BC Library Association conference in 2012 and has been invited to speak on issues of queer sexuality at the Burnaby Public Library. Robert has also been a juror for the BC Book Prizes and is a current member of the Stonewall Book Awards Committee of the American Library Association. He hopes to pursue further studies on trans and two-spirited youth during his PhD program, hopefully culminating in a dissertation on related topics of trans sexuality and youth cultures.

FASS Profile

Nadine Boulay

Nadine Boulay is a PhD student at Simon Fraser University in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies.  Originally from Manitoba, Nadine graduated with her Bachelor of Arts (Honours), with a double major in Women’s and Gender Studies and Religion from the University of Manitoba in 2011.  During her undergraduate degree Nadine became interested in studying sexuality, gay and lesbian history, and feminist social activism- an interest she explored further for her undergraduate thesis.  She recently graduated with her Master’s degree in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s studies at Simon Fraser University.  Her SSHRC-funded these research explored the value of intergenerational conversation between queer women in their 20s, and lesbian women involved in feminist community building and political activism in the Lower Mainland in the 1970s and 80s.  Since 2013, she has worked as a research assistant for the Archives of Lesbian Oral Testimony, an online digital archive housed at Simon Fraser University. Her writing has been published in Australian Feminist Studies and Paideusis: Journal of the Canadian Philosophy of Education Society (forthcoming) and worked as a co-editor for the Feminist and Queer Review at the University of Manitoba.  She has presented research on LGBT Subjectivities in the academy (Winnipeg, 2011), gay and lesbian asylum seekers in Canada (Victoria, 2012), the importance of role models for queer youth (Victoria, 2012), and the necessity of anti-racist allyship in queer communities (Vancouver, 2014). She recently spoke on a roundtable discussing queer and lesbian archives and archival affect at the National Women’s Studies Association meeting in Puerto Rico in November 2014.

Nadine’s PhD research will explore the history of lesbian-feminism in the Lower Mainland in the 1970s and 80s, with a particular focus on rural and island experiences, intentional women’s communities, and the ‘back to the land’ movement.  Her research is supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada CGS Doctoral Scholarship.  She is very excited to be continuing her work with Dr. Elise Chenier, Associate Professor in History at SFU, Director of the Archives of Lesbian Oral Testimony, and scholar of oral history and the history of sexuality.  In her community work, Nadine is involved with co-coordinating an intergenerational queer meeting group, and performing in the popular East Van queer drag show, Man Up.  She is passionate about queer history, intergenerational activism, memory, embodiment and affect theories, and feminist scholarly and community engagement.

Syeda Nayab Bukhari

Syeda Nayab Bukhari’s areas of interest include gender and international development; race, class and gender relations, immigration studies and management of social enterprises. She did her Masters in Journalism, MPhil in Mass Communications and a one year program in Social Enterprise Management, offered by Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) in collaboration with McGill University Canada. She has extensive experience of teaching, advocacy and volunteerism with Public and Private Universities and grass root level as well as international NGOs in Pakistan. As a pioneer member, she has also been involved in setting up and organizing Gender Network, Lahore Chapter and Women Chamber of Commerce and Industries in Pakistan.

Novia Shih-Shan Chen

Novia Shih-Shan Chen received her BFA from National Taiwan University, her MFA in Film Production from Ohio University and is currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University. Novia has worked as a filmmaker and a film and video instructor both in the US, Canada, and Taiwan. Her short documentary film titled Now He is a She, which explores the subjectivity, sexuality and familial relationships of a male-to-female transgendered teacher, has screened at several international queer and women’s film festivals from Taiwan, South Korea, Japan to France. Novia’s background as a female filmmaker and an international doctoral student informs her mobile position both as a creative artist and a diasporic scholar negotiating gender politics, filmic representation and feminist film criticism and theory. Her research project examines the positionality of contemporary female documentary filmmakers, the historical fluctuation associated with the production of their documentary films and the implications of independent filmmaking in the context of Sinophone cinema. Aside from writing, she also teaches in the Asian Studies Program at Kwantlen Polytechnic University and serves on the programming committee at the Vancouver Queer Film Festival.

Reema Faris

Reema Faris successfully defended her MA in Graduate Liberal Studies at Simon Fraser University (SFU) in 2015. She also holds a BA in History and Classical Studies from the University of British Columbia (1983) and an MBA from the University of Toronto (1990).  Ms. Faris has worked as a Teaching Assistant in the Humanities, History, and English departments at SFU and is pursuing her studies as a PhD student with the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies (GSWS). Her research will focus on the intersection of popular culture and feminism.  Specifically, she will be exploring whether popular culture distracts attention from the reality of women’s lives and in fact delays progress on important social policies such as pay equity, universally accessible childcare, and equal political representation. Before following her passion as an academic, Ms. Faris served as a one-term Trustee for the West Vancouver Board of Education and enjoyed a multi-decade career as a communications professional with a variety of public and private sector organizations. She is also a mother who is trying her best to guide a teenage artist through life as well as Grade 10. In addition to being a member of Vancouver Opera’s Board of Directors, she is an avid traveller, a chocolate enthusiast, and often dreams of Paris.

Elizabeth (Eli) Manning

Elizabeth (Eli) Manning is excited to be a doctoral student in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies. Eli completed her first year of her PhD at York University with Dr. Miriam Smith, but came back to BC to be with her family.  Although she is originally from northern Manitoba, she now calls BC home after completing her Bachelor and Masters of Social Work at the University of Victoria.  She also holds a Bachelor of Arts (Major: Native Studies; Minor: Canadian Studies) from the University of Manitoba.  Having worked in an HIV community health centre for nearly a decade, she brings clinical experience to her research work in HIV epidemiology, gender, sex, and sexuality. Eli's Masters in Social Work thesis, "Who Are The Men in 'Men Who Have Sex With Men'?," won the Lieutenant Governor's Silver Medal award marking her work as the best thesis at UVic.  A piece of this thesis, entitled "Infected Deviants: Reading Epidemiology as Biopower in MSM Research" is published in the Canadian Review of Social Policy.  As a Universities Without Walls fellow (2010-11), she was also awarded the Canadian Association for HIV Research New Investigator Award in Social Sciences.  Her research interests include: public health policy; gender, sex, and sexuality; critical race theory; and feminist post-structuralist thought.

Mary Shearman

Mary Shearman is a PhD candidate in the Department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia located on unceded Coast Salish Territories.  Mary pursued her BA (honours) in Theatre at the University of Ottawa and completed her MA (thesis: Betty Lambert’s Plays for Children: A Feminist Approach to Theatre for Young Audiences) in Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University. Mary’s current research explores the history of The Penthouse Nightclub in Vancouver, Canada's longest standing exotic nightclub. Mary is approaching the Penthouse as a case study that illustrates the relationship between dancers, the law and the larger community over approximately a fifty-year period. The Penthouse has survived numerous waves of moral crackdown and aggressive development in the city. It is an extremely important venue in local sex history.  Mary takes her role as instructor/facilitator just as seriously as she does her research and also teaches at Simon Fraser in her home department class.  She has been responsible for teaching and developing Showgirls: Performance, Embodiment and Sexuality as well as an introductory course called Feminist Action.  Mary also really enjoyed teaching Law and Human Reproduction where she probably learned just as much, if not more, than the students enrolled. Mary sits on the Planning Committee for FIRST, a group that advocates for the decriminalization of prostitution.  She is also an avid camper, and spends almost every weekend at Triangle Recreation Campground from May-October where she also sits on the Board of Directors. 

Mary Shearman Website