CFP: Queer sexualities, nationalism and racism in the new Europe

A one-day conference in London.

Over the last few years, debates about nationalism and racism have received renewed critical attention within queer/sexuality studies. Just as the boundaries of ‘Europe’ are being redefined through economic and political integration, the protection of sexual citizenship rights is increasingly celebrated as a core ‘European’ value. However, this discourse has been deployed to produce new exclusions, in a context marked by the rise of defensive and inward-looking nationalisms, by the lingering ‘war on terror’, by increased mobilities within Europe and by initiatives aimed at limiting migration towards ‘Fortress Europe’. As the secular liberalism that inspired both feminism and gay liberation is increasingly becoming conflated with ‘Europeannes’ and ‘whiteness’, important questions are raised about the relationship between sexual citizenship and national belonging in different European contexts; about the ability of LGBTIQ and feminist movements to sustain meaningful solidarities across cultural and geographic boundaries; and about LGBTIQ and feminist communities’ ability to embrace difference along racial, ethnic and faith lines.

The Weeks Centre for Policy and Social Research is hosting a one-day conference on Friday 19th October 2012, to further explore these topical debates. We invite academic contributions from a range of disciplines (including sociology, human geography, area studies, anthropology, and politics) and from across the career stages – submissions from early career and doctoral researchers are warmly encouraged. We also welcome non-academic contributions and participation from representatives of public and voluntary sector organisations.

Confirmed speakers include Dr Antoine Rogers, Dr Francesca Stella, Dr Shaminder Takhar and Professor Yvette Taylor (all Weeks Centre for Social and Policy Research); Dr Isabel Crowhurst (Kingston); James Morton (Scottish Transgender Alliance); Dr Róisín Ryan-Flood (Essex); Dr Asifa Siraj (independent researcher); Sam Rankin (Equality Network); Jane Standing (Kairos in Soho); Dr Mariya Stoilova and Robert Kulpa (Birkbeck); and Dr Matthew Waites (Glasgow). The final roundtable will be chaired by Professor Jeffrey Weeks (Weeks Centre for Social and Policy Research).

We invite papers on and from diverse national and regional locations, and particularly welcome empirically grounded interventions in the debates outlined above. Alongside traditional academic papers, we encourage the use of innovative formats, such as posters, installations etc. Suggested themes include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Geotemporalities and sexualities on the peripheries of ‘the West’/ ‘Europe’
  • (Homo)nationalism and sexual/gender citizenship in different European contexts
  • LGBT activism and solidarities in the ‘new’ Europe: national and transnational dimensions
  • The migration of queers and queer migration
  • LGBT asylum
  • Sexuality, race and ethnicity
  • Sexuality, religion and faith communities
  • Diversity, voluntary sector infrastructure and capacity building
  • Cosmopolitanism, consumerism and queer mobilities: inclusions and exclusions

Please submit proposed abstracts of up to 250 words, to Dr Francesca Stella,, enclosing your contact details. Please save your abstracts with author name followed by Queer_Sexualities_2012. (e.g. Smith_Queer_Sexualities_2012). The deadline for submissions is 15 August 2012.

Conference attendance is free but ticketed (must reserve a place), and all participants are expected to submit an abstract outlining their contribution (paper or other format). For further information please contact the conference organiser, Dr Francesca Stella (