Akwugo Emejulu

Photo by Maximilian Glas


University of Sheffield


Akwugo is Chair of Sociological Studies at the University of Sheffield. Before entering academia, she worked as a community organizer, trade union organizer and participatory action researcher. As a political sociologist, she has research interests in two areas: racial, gender and class inequalities in Europe and women of colour’s intersectional activism for justice.

At THE NEW INSTITUTE, Akwugo is involved in the program Black Feminism and the Polycrisis.

  • What gives you hope?
    The always surprising and innovative ways in which ordinary people organize and mobilize for justice.

  • How does change happen?
    Slowly, through the hard and oftentimes demoralizing work of collective analysis and collective action to build new worlds and new realities.

  • What is the best advice you ever got?
    From my grandmother: “Love many, trust few, always paddle your own canoe.”


“The Lonely Activist: On Being Haunted”, (with L. Bassel), in: The Sociological Review, 2023

Fugitive Feminism, London 2022

“Refusing Politics as Usual: Mapping Women of Colour’s Radical Praxis in London and Amsterdam”, (with I. van der Scheer), in: Identities, 2021

To Exist is to Resist: Black Feminism in Europe (eds. with F. Sobande), London 2019

Minority Women and Austerity: Survival and Resistance in France and Britain (with L. Bassel), Bristol 2017

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