Heidi Safia Mirza

Emeritus Professor of Race, Faith and Culture, Goldsmiths College

Heidi Safia Mirza became one of the UK’s first female black professors in the 1990s. She is an expert in equality studies in education and is internationally renowned for her research on ethnicity, gender, and human rights. She describes how Goldsmiths accepted her in the early 1980s, after 70 rejections, to pursue her PhD, at a time when opportunities for young, black women were very limited. “I wrote my first book ‘Young, Female and Black’ from the heart over 25 years ago while at Goldsmiths. It was a time of overt racism after the Battle of Lewisham and the New Cross Fire. It was based on my own personal experiences of growing up in South London so for it to be quoted as a seminal sociological text is quite something.”