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Miss Grace Garside

Research Postgraduate (PhD)

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Research Postgraduate (PhD) in the Department of Geography601 


I am a Human Geography PhD candidate, funded by the ESRC NEDTC. I began my PhD here at Durham in October 2016, after having completed a Masters by Research here between 2015 - 2016. My research interests include themes of Girlhood, Education and Development, with a particular focus on the Mapuche people. I have spent time working and researching with the Mapuche people in the city of Temuco, Chile. Prior to coming to Durham I completed an BA in Geography at the University of Oxford, UK. After this I spent some time working as an English teacher in the University of INACAP, La Serena, Chile.

Twitter: @GraceEGarside

  • BA Geography: University of Oxford, 2011 - 2014
  • MRes Human Geography: University of Durham, 2015 - 2016
  • Diploma of Spanish as a Foreign Language: University of La Rioja, Spain, 2010

PhD: Girlhood as a Development Tool: The effects of civil education systems on indigenous girls, a Mapuche case study

Currently, the education of girls is recognised as a major global development goal and is the focus of widespread development interventions across the world. In this context, the research investigates the effects of these educational policies on adolescent girls within the Mapuche community in southern Chile.

The research has four main aims:

  1. Examine how policies surrounding "Girlhood as a development tool" are incorporated into mainstream education in Chile and the extent to which this is sensitive to or excludes indigenous identities and cultures
  2. Explore the experiences of mainstream education by Mapuche girls and their responses to their education.
  3. Examine how mainstream Chilean education focuses on the aspirations of Mapuche girls and how the system supports such aspirations
  4. Explore the broader aspects of Mapuche girls' education within their communities and the relationship between this broader education and mainstream education

To achieve these aims, I will undertake fieldwork in the city of Temuco in the south of Chile, working within civic boarding schools and with Mapuche girls. In order to achieve these aims this research will use participatory methods.

MRes: Multiple Masculinities: an exploration of urban Mapuche youth identities in Chile

This thesis explores the multiple masculinities performed by urban Mapuche youth. Current understandings of indigenous masculinity are limited to distinctions between urban and rural, hegemonic and marginalised, and authentic and modern. This explanation essentialises indigenous masculinities by reducing them to limiting dichotomies. This research challenges such essentialisms by exploring the multiple ways in which young urban Mapuche men perform their masculinities and challenge ways in which they are represented. It argues that their masculinities are formed out of complex relationships with Mapuche identity and cannot be dismissed as inauthentic. The thesis draws on qualitative research undertaken during a one-month period between the cities of Santiago and Temuco in Chile, including interviews, focus groups and photo voice with men of Mapuche ethnicity between the ages of 16 and 31. The results show that young Mapuche men experience and express their masculinities in varied and distinct ways. In Santiago, those who identify as 'Mapurbe' (a Mapuche urban youth political movement) understand their masculinity within the traditional Mapuche role system. However, whilst the Mapurbe are often taken to represent Mapuche urban youth more broadly in popular and academic discourses, the research findings suggest that multiple urban youth masculinities exist in Chile. In Temuco, young Mapuche students identify as both Mapuche and Chilean, combining everyday Chilean masculinities with what they believe to be Mapuche expressions of masculinity through displays of aggression. Meanwhile, young professional Mapuche men express their masculinity through understandings of men as providers, actively rejecting a Mapuche masculine identity. The thesis suggests that these complexities in Mapuche masculinities need to be understood through an intersectional approach that takes account of both place and class, which is important in both challenging popular stereotypes and creating a richer understanding of diverse expressions of modern indigeneity.

Avaliable at:

Undergraduate Dissertation: A study into constructing a post coal mining identity in the North East of England

(77%, Nominated for Gender and Feminist Geography Research Group Dissertation Prize).



  • Level 1: Human Geography: Space and Place in a Changing World
  • Level 1: Geographies of Crisis


  • Level 3: Postcolonialism and Development