Menu Close

Emma Whatman

Subject Coordinator in Gender Studies, The University of Melbourne

Dr Emma Whatman (she/her) is an early career researcher and subject coordinator in Gender Studies at the University of Melbourne. Emma's scholarly background is in feminist media studies, contemporary children's literature and culture, and cultural studies. Her research focuses on postfeminism, contemporary feminism, feminist history, young people, and sex education.

Emma completed her PhD in 2019, winning the Alfred Deakin Medal for best university thesis. Through analysis of cultural texts, her thesis argued that postfeminism and neoliberal feminism are the primary modes of feminism introduced to young people. This research is the basis of her first monograph, currently under contract with Wayne State University Press (2023). She is interested in contemporary feminist discourses, particularly online and in relation to young people. Forthcoming research includes publications on feminist children’s literature, consent picture books (with Paul Venzo), and Instagram feminism (with Hannah Garden).

Emma is a collaborative and interdisciplinary researcher. She is a Research Fellow working on curriculum review in Gender Studies at the University of Melbourne, and a Research Fellow on the ARC Discovery Project 'Global Digital Citizenship: Diasporic Youth in a Connected World' with the University of Technology Sydney and Deakin University. She has worked on other research projects, including Higher Education Research with The Centre for Research in Assessment and Digital Learning (CRADLE) and on an ARC funded project on racism and bullying in Australian Schools.


  • 2023–present
    Research Fellow, Deakin University
  • 2022–present
    Sessional Academic, Deakin University
  • 2023–present
    Subject Coordinator, Melbourne University
  • 2022–2023
    Sessional Academic, Melbourne University
  • 2021–2022
    Associate lecturer, Deakin University
  • 2013–2021
    Sessional Academic, Deakin University
  • 2016–2020
    Research assistant, Deakin University


  • 2019 
    Deakin University, PhD
  • 2012 
    Deakin University , Bachelor of Arts (Honours)

Professional Memberships

  • Australian Women and Gender Studies Association (AWGSA)
  • Australasian Children's Literature Research Association (ACLAR)