Research project

Threads: Exploring alternative futures of work with the women entrepreneurs of SO14

Project overview

Threads seeks to engage with South Asian women who have built fabric, clothing and sewing based businesses in Southampton in the last 40 years. We will explore how migrant women in Southampton’s SO14 area have established means of livelihood despite having significant barriers to employment due to a lack of language skills, qualifications and initial capital.

Through a programme of oral history collection, collaborative art creation, entrepreneurship workshops we seek co-create an archive of their experiences. The project will explore how these enterprises were more than simply small businesses. We will explore how these businesses not only provided livelihood to their founders but also a sense of community and belonging to their patrons.

Therefore, through this work we seek to tell the stories of the lives of South Asian women as they settled into like in the UK. We hope to use the lessons learnt from this exploration to engage with and empower newly arrived migrant women in Southampton to consider alternative forms of work and entrepreneurship that build on skills and knowledge they already possess.


Lead researcher

Dr Pritipuspa Mishra

Associate Professor

Research interests

  • Indian history from 1800 to Present
  • India and the British Empire
  • Indian Anti-colonialism
Connect with Pritipuspa

Collaborating research institutes, centres and groups

Research outputs