Mothering in the Remote Academy

Building Bridges and Negotiating Isolation


  • Maggie Quirt York University



Pandemic, Mothering, Academy, Gender Inequality, Youth Integration, Labour, Equitable Faculty Workloads


In this article, I use Rachel Kadish’s feminist analysis in The Weight of Ink as a jumping off point to explore the experience of mothering in the academy during the pandemic. The structural gender inequalities that constrain opportunities for Kadish’s female characters will be familiar to women in the academy who have long struggled to achieve work-life balance under patriarchal conditions. I argue that such inequalities have persisted in the shift to remote teaching, and that the pandemic experience of mothers in the academy has been characterized by challenges related to both proximity and absence. This, in turn, has implications for the role academic mothers play in helping youth integrate effectively into their university classes and cohorts. I maintain that women’s traditional role as bridge builders can contribute to positive outcomes for youth, but institutions must establish equitable faculty workloads in order to support these efforts in a more systematic and structured manner.


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How to Cite

Quirt, M. (2022). Mothering in the Remote Academy: Building Bridges and Negotiating Isolation. INYI Journal, 12(1).