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|Dr. Rumana Hashem

Post-doctoral Associate

Centre for Migration, Refugees and Belonging, Social Sciences

Rumana teaches in the School of Social Sciences’ Open Learning Initiative programme. Her research interests include conflict, forced-migration and gendered-violence; interconnections between gender, ethnicity and migration; post-conflict reconstruction and transitional justice; and representation of migrant and refugees. 

    Rumana Hashem is a post-doctoral associate at the Centre for Migration, Refugees and Belonging (CMRB). Rumana is a feminist, a sociologist and an activist-researcher, affiliated with the Centre for Research on Migration, Refugees and Belonging at the University of East London. She works on contemporary issues and with real people in academic and non-academic settings. Her research interests are in several interrelated fields: conflict, post-conflict reconstruction and peace; identity and politics of belonging; interconnections between gender, power and politics; intersections of gender, ethnicity and migration; and life narratives and oral history research.   

    Rumana is interested in life narratives and oral history, and works with both macro and micro narrative analysis. She focuses on how individual narratives and macro narratives intersect in particular socio-cultural and historically specific contexts. Her completed research projects include narratives of gendered and sexualised violence in ethno-nationalist conflict in Bangladesh, oral history research with non-EU migrants and refugees in London, and action-research on reproductive and sexual health of young people and women in Bangladesh. She has listened to, recorded and analysed narratives of mostly women but also men in various research projects which include academic and non-academic studies.

    She has been an activist and an advocate of climate struggle, refugee rights, secularism and sex/gender equality for many years. She was a journalist by profession before moving over academia to do feminist research and teaching. Her research and teaching are informed by her two decades of activism and lived gendered experience.
    Rumana’s current research explores the lived experience of refugees and undocumented migrants at a politically shifting and culturally diverse and paradoxical city of London. Prior to this, she has completed a doctoral study on “Gender and Armed Conflict” with a reference to Bangladesh in 2014. She has also conducted a civic engagement project with non-EU migrants and local refugees in East London in 2015. Her work appeared in both academic journals and media including activist blogs and print and online newspapers.  

    Membership of Professional Bodies and Learned Societies:
    •    Association for the Study of Ethnicity and Nation, Full member
    •    British Sociological Association, Study Group Convenor - Activism in Sociology Forum.
    •    International Association for the Study of Forced Migration, Working Group Co-ordinator.                               
    •    Conflict Research Society, UK, Member. 

    Experience Keywords: Armed conflict and forced migration; belonging and identities; community development; ethnicity and gendered violence; feminism and nationalism in South Asia; migration, refugee and representation; post-conflict reconstruction; qualitiative research methodology, ethics in conflict and refugee research.
     Editorial Experience:
    •    Editorial Member, International Journal of Social Science Studies.
    •    Co-moderator, History of Forced Migration and Refugees.
    •    Co-moderator, Forum for Bangladesh Research Network.
    •    Reviewer, ENQUIRE (The Electronic Nottingham Quarterly for Ideas, Research and Evaluation, a post-graduate journal of Sociology. ISSN: 1756-199X.(2008-2015)
    •    Moderator, Community Women’s Blog.
    •    Reviewer, The British Journal of Sociology (2013-14)

    Rumana Hashem is involved in a number of roles in external groups and projects such as: Co-convenor of Activism in Sociology Forum of British Sociological Association, coordinator of Working Group on the Archiving and Documentation of the History of Forced Migration of International Association for the Study of Forced Migration, and blog editor of Migration and Asylum Network


    Rumana is currently working on an IASFM funded project to develop a knowledge exchange on history of forced migration and the role of archives, and the ethical and methodological engagement in relation to the ways in which stories of forced-migrants and refugees are produced, documented and preserved. This is a collaborative project of UEL’s Living Refugee Archive and International Association for the Study of Forced Migration which was launched in October 2015, and has focused on developing a transnational Working Group for Archiving and Documentation of History of Forced Migration and Refugees. Awarded with a Seed Fund of International Association for the Study of Forced Migration, Rumana is co-working with seven other members of the Working Group based in Canada, Scotland, UK and US.

    Her other research project focuses on life narratives of non-EU and undocumented migrants and refugees who arrived in the UK in 2015 or after. This oral history project was initially funded by UEL’s civic engagement project. In this project, she analyses the continuous shifts and contradictions in life narratives of migrants and refugees that are told within multi-layered, multilingual and transcultural contexts. This research also looks into intersections of gender, ethnicity, class, race and religion in the migration journey, and studies the intersections of individual story and the macro-narrative told by participants.  



    Gender and Armed Conflict: SAGE Research Methodology in Cases.

    Hashem, R.. 2016. Sage Publications Ltd..

    Hashem, R. (2013). An Anthology of Narrative Research: Molly Andrews, Corrine Squire and Maria Tamboukou present their second volume of Doing Narrative Research - A book review.  Doing Narrative Research, Molly Andrews, Corinne Squire and Maria Tamboukou ([2008] 2013), in Digesis- The E-Journal for Narrative Theory, 3, no.1.

    Hashem, R. (forthcoming). Refugees and the Meaning of Home: Cypriot Narratives of Loss, Longing and Daily Life in London, Helen Taylor (2015), in Refugee Review, IV. 

    Hashem, R. (2014). A book review of Debra Gimlin’s Cosmetic Surgery Narratives: A Cross-Cultural Analysis of Women’s Accounts, Debra Gimlin (2013), in Feminism & Psychology, 24, no.4: 551-554. 

    Hashem, R. (2009) Gendered dynamics of armed conflict: Analysing violence in the ethno-nationalist conflict in the Chittagong Hill Tracts’. In: Kara, N. ed. Gender at the Cross Road: Multi-disciplinary Perspective. Cyprus: The Eastern Mediterranean University, pp. 387-396

    Hashem, R. (2009) Framing nation-state and gender, PhD Research in Progress: The Yearbook of School of Social Sciences, Media and Cultural Studies, 3: 66-82.

    Hashem, R. (2012) Narratives of violence and gendered experiences: Notes on methods and methodology, Crossing Conceptual Boundaries, 1 (4): 50-62. 

    Hashem, R. (2015) Gender and intersectionality: The material and symbolic in theorizing gender, The Journal of Social Sciences, 147: 31-54. 

    Hashem, R. (2014) Empirical research on gender and armed Conflict: Applying narratology, intersectionality and anti-Oppressive methods, SAGE Research Methods and SAGE Research Methods Cases, 2.

    Robbins, D. and Hashem, R. et al. (2009) Concluding discussion: Reflections on colonial language, experience of migration in Europe and crossing disciplinary boundaries. In: Robbins, D. ed. PhD Research in Progress: The Yearbook of School of Social Sciences, Media and Cultural Studies, 3. London: University of East London, pp. 214-19. 

    Hashem, R.  Muradova, A. and Rukceyeva, S. (2000). ‘Refugees and migrants: A critical look at the statistics’. In: Albrecht- Heidie, A. and Chakrabarty, E. eds. Tortured women and Female Political Refugees: Transition of Identities and Ethnisation of Support Systems. Hannover: International Women’s University, pp. 65-82.



    ·         International Association for the Study of Forced Migration’s Seed Fund, 2015-2016.

    ·         University of East London’s Civic Engagement Funding 2015.

    ·         School of Humanities and Social Sciences PhD Excellence Fund 2008.

    ·         Deutcher Forschung Graduentenkolleg Research Fellowship Scholarship 2001-2003.

    ·         Deutcher Akademischer Austauschdienst Scholarship 2000.

    ·         Dhaka University Excellence Scholarship 1995-1998.


    Rumana believes that political and community activism and direct actions for social changes are more important than academic work. She has been involved in grassroots campaigns and various social movements for climate, free education, refugee rights, secularism and women’s rights. Her move to the west from Bangladesh was a consequence of her dedicated roles in two student movements in 1998 and 1999. She was threatened of being expelled from attending exam for her undergraduate degree at the Dhaka University. Following the threats, she has migrated in Germany in 2000 and continues to be an activist at multi-fronts. Her current activism includes social movement against climate change and extractive companies, secularist women’s movement against Sharia Law, movement for human rights and peace in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, and movement for freedom of expression and secularism.
    Rumana’s interest in blogging arose from her activism. She sees blogging is an effective way to defend freedom of expression and rights. She founded, co-edited and co-moderate several activist and academic blogs including Bangladesh Research Network , Community Women’s Blog, Phulbari Solidarity blog, and Archiving and Documentation of History of Forced Migration and Refugee blog

    Columns and Opinion Pieces in Media (2016 -17)

    Hashem, R. and Mayenin, P. 2017. Why Every Secularist Should Boycott Trump’s US. Open Democracy. [Online]. 12 February. [Accessed 18 February 2017]. Available from

    Hashem, R. 2017. Under the Open Sky. Normalising Violence against Santal People. Dhaka  Tribune. 06 January, p.5-6.

    Limki, R., Singh, C., Sandhu, K. and Hashem, R. et al. 2016. The World in: Women in Politics. Real Media. [Online]. 14 November. [Accessed 15 November 2016]. Available from

    Hashem, R. and Quarto, A. 2016. Mourning the Sundarbans. Dhaka Tribune. 27 August. [Accessed 04 September 2016]. Available from

    Hashem, R. 2016. The missing woman is far from being silent: Opinion. Dhaka Tribune. 15 June. [Accessed 16 June 2016]. Available from

    Hashem, R. 2016. The Missing lines in Bangladesh profile: Post Editorial. New Age.12 June. [Accessed 12 June 2016]. Available from

    Hashem, R. 2016. Witnessing Horror in Father’s Dream Land: Tribute to a Believer in   

    Freespeech. International Humanist and Ethical Union. Online]. 12 May. [Accessed 14 May 2016]. Available from

    Farrar, M. and Hashem, R. 2015. Opposing Terror: Dilemmas for the left on Islam, Islamophobia  and Islamism. Open Democracy. [Online]. 3 December. [Accessed 04 December 2015]. Available from:



    She is currently teaching and acting as an academic tutor to refugees in the Open Learning Initiative programme at the School of Social Sciences. She has taught on post-graduate and undergraduate courses in Gender Studies, Psycho-Social Studies and Sociology at the University of Leicester, the University of East London, and Bangladesh Rural Advancement Cooperatives University. She has taught and co-taught on the following modules:

     Construction of Identities (1st year), Gender and Development (MS), Introduction to Sociology (1st year), Individual and Society (2nd year), Psychosocial Approaches to Everyday Culture (2nd year), Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society (3rd year), Research Methodologies (2nd year), Race, Ethnicity and Culture (1st year), Sociology of Health, Illness and the Body (3rd year).