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Aarti Ratna

Dr Aarti Ratna PhD

Associate Professor

School of Sport, Health and Social Sciences

023 8201 6252 ext. 6252 Room no. RM212a


Having already started a lecturing post at Leeds Metropolitan University in 2006, Aarti completed her doctorate in 2008 at the University of Brighton. After 12 years working in Leeds, she commenced a new post as Associate Professor of Sociology at Solent University in April 2019.

Aarti's academic service includes serving as chair for the Leisure Studies Editorial Board, associate editor for the journal Palgrave Communications; editorial board member for the Palgrave book series New Femininities in Digital, Physical and Sporting Cultures; an editorial board member for the journal Sociology of Sport; and co-chair of the BSA Sport Study group.

Taught courses

Further information

  1. Industry experience

    Aarti was a racial equality tutor and consultant at the English Football Association (2005-8). She has also been a research consultant at other organisations including Sporting Equals, Leeds United Football Club, the Middlesex County Football Association, St Lukes Care, the Anti-Social Behavioural Unit (Leeds), the London Sports Forum and Leeds City Council.
  2. Teaching experience

    Aarti has a long history of teaching on various leisure, culture and sport courses at Leeds Beckett University, as well as serving as a principal lecturer of learning and teaching for the Carnegie Faculty of Sport and Education.

    Her current teaching includes convening an introduction to studying sociology, political ideologies, and equity and diversity in the workplace. Her optional specialisms include 'race and ethnicity in multicultural Britain' and 'refugee and migration studies'.

    Aarti is currently supervising five PhD students in the areas of refugee and asylum studies; race, ethnicity and migration; transnational/postcolonial feminism; queer studies; and complex assemblages of power through the contexts of popular culture, leisure, sport, and everyday life. 

    Please contact Aarti if you are interested in undertaking a PhD under her supervision. 

  3. Research interests

    Aarti is a sociologist of race, ethnicity, migration, and diaspora studies. She is well known for her transnational feminist and anti-racist approaches to the study of gender, national belonging, popular culture, leisure and sport.
  4. Recent publications

    Follow the link below for a list of Aarti's publications.


    Ratna, A. and Samie, S.F. (Eds.) (2017) Sport, Race and Gender: The politics of ethnic ‘other’ girls and women, London: Routledge.

    Special issues

    Thangaraj, S., Burdsey, B., Ratna, A., and Rand, E. (2018) ‘Leisure Cultures and G/local Challenges to Nationalist Populist Politics’ Special Issue, Leisure Studies, DOI:

    Journal articles

    Ratna, A. (2019) Hierarchical Assemblages of Citizenship and Belonging: The Pedestrian Speech Acts of Gujarati Indian Walkers, Sociology, DOI:

    Thangaraj, S., Ratna, A., Burdsey, D. and Rand, E. (2018) ‘Racing National Populist Politics’, Leisure Studies, DOI:        

    Ratna, A. (2018) ‘Not just merely different: Travelling feminist theories, post-feminism, and the racialized politics of women of color’, Sociology of Sport Journal, Special Issue. DOI:

  5. Work in progress

    Aarti is currently working on a number of research council grants and projects. Follow the link below to find out more.
    • The prevention of serious organised crime (Home Office) - using sport and education workshops as an interventional tool to working with South Asian at-risk communities in Bradford.
    • Healthy ageing and community-led 'silent reggae walks' with older African-Caribbean citizens (Lewisham, UK).
    • South Asian diasporas and the LGBTQI dance scene (London and New York).
    • South Asian women refugees and migrants, health and wellbeing (India).
    • Dance and the community and heritage of black (ageing) women (Leeds, UK)
    • British Asian men and women, representations and the sporting workplace (UK).
  6. Awards

    Follow the link below to find out more about the awards Aarti has received.
    • University Unsung Hero, Nomination (2018)
    • Aurora Females in Leadership (2016)
    • 2016 HEA Senior Fellowship (2016)
    • Inspirational Teacher of the Year, Nomination (2016)
    • University Research Supervisor’s Training Certificate (2010)