Core Faculty

Associate Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice
Graduate Studies Chair

Dr. Dina Al-Kassim is a critical theorist who works on political subjectivation, sexuality and aesthetics in transnational modernist and contemporary postcolonial cultures, including the Middle East, Africa, Europe and the United States. She is the author of On Pain of Speech: Fantasies of the First Order and the Literary Rant (University of California Press, 2010), which examines parrhesia and the politics of address in the practice of literary ranting. Al-Kassim is an Associate at the PWIAS and now teaches in the Department of English and The Social Justice Institute at UBC. Her publications have appeared in Grey Room, International Journal of Middle East Women’s StudiesPublic CultureCultural Dynamics, and the volume Islamicate Sexualities. Al-Kassim has been a Mellon Postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University, a Senior Seminar Fellow at Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute, and a Sawyer Seminar, Residency Fellow at the University California Humanities Research Institute. A much invited speaker here and abroad, Al-Kassim now divides her time between Vancouver and Los Angeles.

Associate Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Dr. Leonora (Nora) C. Angeles is Associate Professor at the School of Community and Regional Planning and the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice at the University of British Columbia. She is also faculty research associate at the UBC Centre for Human Settlements where she has been involved in a number of applied research and capacity-building research projects in Brazil, Vietnam and Southeast Asian countries. Her continuing research and interests are on community and international development studies and social policy, participatory planning and governance, participatory action research, and the politics of transnational feminist networks, women’s movements and agrarian issues, particularly in the Southeast Asian region.

Instructor I, Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Dr. JP Catungal is Instructor I (Tenure-Track) in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies in the GRSJ Institute. His teaching interests include anti-racist feminisms, queer-of-colour critique, the politics of knowledge production, and migration and diaspora studies. JP’s research develops queer-of-colour and anti-racist feminist interventions in the scholarship of teaching and learning. He is also engaged in ongoing work on racial geographies of sexual health, alignments between homonationalism and straight allyship, and queer-of-colour theorizing in Filipinx-Canadian studies.

Associate Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Ayesha S. Chaudhry is the Canada Research Chair in Religion, Law and Social Justice. She is Associate Professor of Islamic studies and Gender studies at the University of British Columbia, where she also serves on the Board of Governors. She was a 2016-17 Wall Scholar at the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Study at the UBC and she was the 2015-16 Rita E. Hauser fellow at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. She is the author of Domestic Violence and the Islamic Tradition: Ethics, Law, and the Muslim Discourse on Gender (Oxford University Press, 2014). Dr. Chaudhry’s research focuses on Islamic legal and theological reform, with an eye towards promoting human rights by focusing on women’s rights. Dr. Chaudhry is deeply committed to bridging the academic and civil society divide. In service of this commitment, she is actively engaged in civic discourse around religion. She has consulted on high-level national and international cases concerning human rights, religious freedom, and pluralism. She works with NGOs and international development organizations to improve women’s rights and promote pluralism. She is currently working on two major projects, one entitled “Feminist Shari’a” and the other “The Colour of God”.

Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Gillian Creese is Professor at the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice and Professor at the Department of Sociology. She has been engaged in intersectional feminist research and teaching about social justice issues in Canada for more than thirty years. Her current research focuses on the gendered and racialized dimensions of immigration and settlement in Canada, as well as the experiences of the second generation. She also continues to work on inequalities and exclusions in the labour market, unions, and the impacts of neo-liberal governance.

Director, Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Dr. Denise Ferreira da Silva’s academic writings and artistic practice address the ethical questions of the global present and target the metaphysical and ontoepistemological dimensions of modern thought. Currently, she is an Associate Professor and Director of The Social Justice Institute (the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice) at the University of British Columbia. Before joining UBC, she was an Associate Professor of Ethnic Studies, at the University of California, San Diego and, from 2010 to 2015, she held the inaugural chair in Ethics, at the School of Business and Management and the directorship of the Centre for Ethics and Politics, at Queen Mary University of London. Her research areas include Critical Racial and Ethnic Studies, Feminist Theory, Critical Legal Theory, Political Theory, Moral Philosophy, Postcolonial Studies, and Latin American & Caribbean Studies. Ferreira da Silva is regularly invited to participate in international events and to contribute to publications in academic and artistic settings.

Associate Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Dr. Leila Harris is most interested in gender, inequality and justice in relation to environment and development (from a feminist political ecology perspective), as well as intersections of gender, citizenship, narrative and state building. Projects include: state-led developmental and environmental change in Turkey (with focus on gender and ethnicity); everyday water access, narrative and and citizenship in Ghana and South Africa First Nations water governance in British Columbia; and discourses of reproduction in North American green politics.

Annette Henry holds the David Lam Chair in Multicultural Education and is a Professor in the Department of Language and Literacy Education. Her scholarship examines race, class, language, gender and culture in socio-cultural contexts of teaching and learning in the lives of Black students and Black women teachers’ practice in Canada, the U.S. and the Caribbean. She has written extensively about diverse feminisms and conceptual and methodological research issues especially in culture-specific contexts.

Lecturer, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Dr. Heather Latimer is a Lecturer at the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice, and in the Coordinated Arts Program, where she teachers literature and academic writing. Her teaching and research focus on the links between representational politics and social identities, and she specializes in feminist theory, sexuality studies, science studies, and the body. She has published articles in Feminist TheorySocial Text, and Modern Fiction Studies, and her first book Reproductive Acts was published 2013. She is a recent winner of the prestigious UBC Killam Teaching Prize.

Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Since 1995, Dr. Becki Ross has held a joint appointment in the Institute of Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice and the Department of Sociology. She teaches and researches in the areas of the history of sexuality, ‘the family’, gender/queer relations, qualitative methods, anti-racist studies, and critical sport studies. Becki is the recipient of two teaching awards (2005 & 2008. She will serve as the Harry Lyman Hooker Fellow at McMaster University in September 2013.

Lecturer, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice
Undergraduate Academic Advisor

Dr. Kim Snowden is a 12-month Lecturer in the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice and the Coordinated Arts Program. She received her PhD in Women’s and Gender Studies from UBC in 2007 and has taught at the Institute since 2004. Her primary fields of scholarship and teaching are cultural studies, literary studies, film studies, popular culture, and fairy tale studies. She is currently a GRSJ Academic Advisor for undergraduate students.

Senior Instructor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice
Chair, Undergraduate Program and Undergraduate Advisor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice
Chair, Critical Studies in Sexuality

Dr. Janice Stewart has a PhD from McGill University in English Literature. She teaches in the Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice program as well as in the Critical Studies in Sexuality program. Her interests include critical theory, gender theory, anti-racist work as well an interest in Modernist writers such as Virginia Woolf and Emily Carr.

Associate Professor, Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice

Dr. Sunera Thobani is Associate Professor at the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice at the University of British Columbia,. Her research focuses on critical race, postcolonial and feminist theory, globalization, citizenship, migration, Muslim women, the War on Terror, and media. Her book, Exalted Subjects: Studies in the Making of Race and Nation in Canada, was published by the University of Toronto Press (2007) and she has also co-edited Asian Women:Interconnections (Canadian Scholars’ Press, 2005) and States of Race:Critical Race Feminist Theory for the 21st Century (Between the Lines, 2010).

Teaching Faculty

Please note: teaching faculty cannot supervise graduate students.


Manjeet Birk has been a visitor on the traditional unceded territory of the Coast Salish people all her life. She has worked, studied and played across the world but a piece of her always remains on the west coast. She is currently a PhD Candidate in Education and her research interests focus on organizing, racialized and Indigenous girls/women and social justice. With a lifetime of experience organizing, troubling and challenging systems, Manjeet is always looking for new ways to re-conceptualize a more beautiful world.

Dr. Litsa Chatzivasileiou has a PhD in Hispanic Studies with a specialization in feminist philosophy and cultural theory, in particular post-structuralism and post-colonial studies. She has worked as an assistant professor at the Hispanic Studies at the University of British Columbia and is currently teaching as a sessional instructor at the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice.

Dr. Douglas’ research and writing are interdisciplinary, drawing upon cultural studies, critical race and gender studies, post colonial and transnational feminist scholarship. Dr. Douglas has taught courses at the undergraduate and graduate level in both Canada and the US. Her areas of interest are diverse and include necropolitics: violence, everyday racism, and racialized misogyny, sport and the social production of blackness, anti-racist and feminist qualitative methodologies, equity and the academy, and race and the law.

Dr. Lori MacIntosh received her Ph.D. in the Sociology of Education in 2013. She has been teaching in the Faculty of Education since 2009, and in Critical Studies in Sexuality since 2011. Lori also serves as an academic advisor in UBC’s Doctor, Patient and Society (DPAS) Undergraduate Medical Program. Her research interests include critical studies in gender and sexuality, queer theory, youth media studies, and the intersecting realms of social justice theory.

Dr. Chris Shelley received his doctorate in Women’s Studies and Gender Relations from UBC. He also holds a MPhil in Education with a focus on critical pedagogy and a MA in Counselling Psychology. Chris is a sessional lecturer at the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality & Social Justice and in the graduate program in Counselling Psychology. His interests include feminist and intersectional theories, LGBTQ health and wellness, social justice and mental health, feminist and Indigenous counselling practices.

Evan is a PhD Candidate in UBC’s Department of Language and Literacy Education and a member of UBC’s Public Scholars network. Evan’s CIHR-funded dissertation research focuses on the intersections of gender diversity, cancer health, and the health literacy and decision-making of trans* and gender nonconforming populations. Evan is a trans person with multiple genders and sexualities and has an insatiable passion for subversion.

Dr. Jessi Taylor is a queer feminist interested in interdisciplinary approaches to understanding violence, international relations and security studies, and feminist analyses of terrorism.  Her research focuses on religious and sexual violence in conflict zones.  She is interested in queer and feminist organizing during and after conflict, religious feminisms, and activism in Canada, especially regarding sex worker’s rights, reproductive justice, and harm reduction.  Outside academia, she is an experienced sex educator and reproductive justice activist.

Dr. Anika Tilland-Stafford’s research focuses on children and gender justice and spans sociological and historical methods. Her book,Is it Still a Boy? Heteronormativity in Kindergarten, is forthcoming with UBC Press. Dr. Stafford completed her SSHRC funded PhD with the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice at the University of British Columbia and was subsequently awarded a SSHRC postdoctoral fellowship for which she took up research on gender, sexuality, and children’s recreational programming in BC during the Cold War era.