The herring girls living on the (knife) edge – research seminar on Thursday

Shetland herring girl. (Picture courtesy of Shetland Museum Archives)

The next seminar in The Edge research theme series takes place on Thursday and focuses on the lives of Scottish herring girls.

Until the second world war, herring girls travelled the country, working in fishing ports as the offshore fleet pursuing the shoals of migrating herring.

These women inhabited the edges of society wherever they travelled and had to combat the negative stereotyping that journeyed with them.

Entitled Living on the (knife) edge  – mapping the physical and metaphorical journeys of the Scots herring girls, the seminar is led by Professor Donna Heddle, director of the UHI Centre for Nordic Studies, and will explore the story of the herring lassies and the ways and means they used to create their own self supporting societal structures.

The free, online seminar runs from 1-2pm GMT on Thursday, December 10. For details on how to access it, click here.

Take your photographs to The Edge in exciting new competition

A photography competition to accompany the 2020 University of the Highlands and Islands Humanities and Arts Research Cluster (HARC) theme, The Edge, is now open to all UHI students and staff.

The competition — a joint venture between HARC and the University of the Highlands and Islands Society, Identity, Knowledge and Landscape (SILK) — runs until December 24.

The organisers are looking for a range of styles and well-crafted and imaginative images. Photographs may be taken on any device, including phones.

The Edge is the second HARC/SILK research theme following on from Ruination and Decay.

The concept of The Edge denotes the demarcation of a boundary or delimitation between contrasting physical and conceptual entities, categorisations and perceptions. Equally, The Edge can be considered in terms of periphery – again physically, geographically or conceptually.

The subjects are intended to allow these different qualities to assume visual and creative expression:

1. The edge: weather
2. Jagged edge  
3. Life and death on the edge
4. The edge as visionary place  

Each person may enter up to three photographs for each subject. Photographs must be taken during the competition period (November 5-December 24, 2020).

Please email your photographs (subject: Photo competition) in jpeg format to Pàdruig ( Make sure each photograph is clearly labelled with your initials, the title and subject category (e.g. N.S.– photo title – Subject 1, 2, 3 or 4).

Entries will be judged by our two SILK experts: Lindsay Blair and Matt Sillars, with each subject having first, second, and third-ranking with an additional commended place.

Winners will be announced at the end of January 2021, and have their photographs put up on either the clusters or UHI main website.

Terms and conditions

  • All copyright remains with the photographer.
  • Images which are entered will be used in SILK/HARC Edge Conference publicity and may be shown online in UHI social media and on the UHI Website.  
  • Full image credit will be added to all social media and online use.
  • Images will only be used for other purposes by the University or the Research Clusters in negotiation with the copyright holder.