The Scholarly Association of Menopausal Studies (SAMS)

Penryn Campus

The Scholarly Association of Menopausal Studies (SAMS) is the first academic organisation to put menopausal studies in the spotlight in response to the emerging interest in menopause. This is a condition which effects half the population, but until recently has been treated as taboo.  Our goal is to promote a greater sense of health and wellbeing by raising awareness of menopause and perimenopause within the academic community and beyond and to cultivate a wider understanding of various medical, social, and cultural contexts.   

Project details

Project lead Ruth Heholt, Jo Parsons, Jennifer Young, Jill Kirby, Marie Mulvey-Roberts
Start date July 2023
End date Ongoing
External website Menopause: New Perspectives

A new scholarly association which puts menopausal studies in the spotlight. This association will look at scholarship, creativity, and intersections between history, literature, the humanities, ecology, medicine, science, new media, technology, and the arts.  

The Association has the following aims: 

  •  To uncover the historical and contemporary representations of older women through folklore, literature, and the popular press throughout the ages and within different global cultures. 
  • To examine historical and contemporary medical discourse and practice in order to create resources for researchers and practitioners. 
  • To give voice to women’s real-life experience of the menopause and life as an older woman to build a sense of community and shared experiences. 
  • To collate a database of stories in a variety of forms. 
  •  To build a portfolio of recommendations in relation to representations, discourses, and working life. 
  •  To build a set of teaching and learning tools to help educate young people in relation to the experiences and representations of older women. 
  •  To explore creativity and technology in relation to menopausal studies.  

Project team

Dr Ruth Heholt: profile image
Dr Ruth Heholt

Project lead - Ruth Heholt

Ruth Heholt is an internationally renowned scholar in the fields of Gothic, supernatural, Victorian, folk horror, and crime fiction studies. She is author of Catherine Crowe: Gender, Genre, and Radical Politics (Routledge, 2020) and co-author of Gothic Kernow: Cornwall as Strange Fiction (Anthem Press, 2022). She is co-editor of several collections including Gothic Britain: Dark Places in the Provinces and Margins of the British Isles (2018), The Victorian Male Body (2018), and Haunted Landscapes (2017).

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Additional team members

Falmouth staff:

  • Ruth Heholt 
  • Joanne Ella Parsons 
  • Jennifer Young 

Other staff:

  • Marie Mulvey-Roberts (UWE) 
  • Jill Kirby (University of Sussex) 


Professor Marie Mulvey-Roberts brought funds from the University of the West of England (UWE) for our launch event in 2023.