As Research Assistant, Mara Gold spent four months undertaking in-depth research into the museum collections to kick-start the exhibition process. Mara also researched and suggested new material that could be collected as part of the project and continues to collaborate on the exhibition's development. Mara is a DPhil student in Classical Languages and Literature based at St Hilda's College, Oxford. Mara works on female homosociality and the influence of the ancient world on women's concepts of gender, sexuality and feminism in the late 19th/early 20th century. She has a particular interest in queer nostalgia as well as understanding and preserving queer heritage. She is co-convenor of the Oxford Queer Studies Network based at TORCH and on the steering group for Queer Research UK (QRUK), a new national network.
Prior to commencing her DPhil Mara was employed in the arts and heritage sector, including as a researcher at the V&A, where she worked on LGBTQ+ network. She has additional postgraduate qualifications in Advanced Theatre Practice (Royal Central School of Speech and Drama), Archaeology (UCL) and Modern History (Oxford). She also many years of experience as a theatre practitioner and workshop facilitator, focussing on exploring identity through drama and working with teenagers and adults with learning disabilities.