Female university staff recreate 150-year-old all-male professors’ photo

Senior female leaders at a Scottish university recreated a 150-year-old staff photo replacing the men with women.

The original, taken in 1870, depicted the University of Glasgow’s all-male staff standing on a staircase outside the old High Street site, as they prepared to move to new premises.

And on the 150th anniversary of the university’s move to their Gilmorehill campus, the women recreated the picture to celebrate International Women’s Day.

Professor Jill Morrison, clerk of senate and vice-principal, said: “On the occasion of the first image being created, there were no women leaders, academics or students at the University.”

Ms Morrison, who is the university’s gender equality champion, added: “We felt it was important to reflect how far we, as an institution, have come, while also acknowledging that we still have a way to go on our journey to gender equality.”

Glasgow University
Glasgow University

At the time of the 1870 photo, all of the university’s academics, senior leaders and students were men.

Now, about 31% of professors and senior staff members are women, along with nearly 60% of more than 30,000 students at the university.

The senior women leaders hope the 2020 version will “help to act as a catalyst for focused reflection, discussion, planning and continued action on the issue of gender equality”.

University of Glasgow
University of Glasgow

Ms Morrison hopes that “this photo will inform discussions and reflection on gender equality both on International Women’s Day and throughout the year”.

The recreation will be celebrated at an event at the university on Friday.