Brasenose JCR is to celebrate forty years of co-education by commissioning “large, good quality and permanent” portraits of female students and alumni, after a motion passed on Sunday by the JCR.
The motion, proposed by French and Italian student Margherita De Fraja, resolves to “invite various female alumni, fellows and maybe even tutors to have photographs of them hung around the walls of the JCR with details of their names and achievements under them.”
Motivated by the fact that “very little has actively been done in college and the JCR to celebrate this anniversary or the women who have been graduates and active members of this college since then”, the motion goes on to note that: “this forty year anniversary is an excellent opportunity to showcase some of the many things that female Brasenose Alumni have achieved since graduating and also celebrating how much of an integral part of college life women have become.”
Henry Zeffman, JCR President of Brasenose, remarked: “I’m delighted that this excellent motion was passed. I think everyone at Brasenose is proud that we were at the vanguard of co-education in Oxford, and it is great that the JCR wants to celebrate it.” De Fraja’s motion follows in the footsteps of Hertford College, which celebrated the milestone last month with a similar scheme that replaced pictures of ‘dead white men’ with those of female students and fellows. Alice Nutting, a second-year English student at Exeter and contributor to feminist magazine Cuntry Living, commented: “I think it’s great that Brasenose is following Hertford’s example of recognising the achievements of women in the college in this way. Oxford colleges are cluttered with centuries-old portraits of men, which is not representative given the fantastic contributions that women have made to our university.”