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COUNTERPRESS | Decolonizing Sexualities
Book | ISBN 978-1-910761-02-1 | Eds. Bakshi, Jivraj, and Posocco | Creative, activist, and scholarly contributions on the ways in which sexuality, race, and religion intersect in different national settings and transnationally.
decolonizing sexualities, decolonial theory, decolonialism, postcolonialism, sexuality, LBGT, gender, race, religion
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Decolonizing Sexualities: Transnational Perspectives, Critical Interventions

editors

Sandeep Bakshi (University of Le Havre)
Suhraiya Jivraj (University of Kent)
Silvia Posocco (Birkbeck, University of London)

B & W 229 x 152 mm | Perfect Bound on White w/Matte Laminate | Colour Illustrations | 324 pages | Paperback ISBN 978-1-910761-02-1 | E-book (PDF) ISBN N/A | 21 October 2016

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description

Decolonizing Sexualities: Transnational Perspectives, Critical Interventions contributes to the critical field of queer decolonial studies by demonstrating how sexuality, race, gender and religion intersect transnationally. The volume maps some of the specifically local issues as well as the common ones affecting queer/trans people of colour (qtpoc). The contributions are not delimited by traditional academic style but rather draw on creative inspiration to produce knowledge and insight through various styles and formats, including poetry, essays, statements, manifestos, as well as academic mash-ups. Queering coloniality and the epistemic categories that classify people means to disobey and delink from the coloniality of knowledge and of being. At this intersection, decolonial queerness is necessary not only to resist coloniality but, above all, to re-exist and re-emerge decolonially.

The volume is more than timely. First, it contributes to the field of decolonial queer theory, second it offers a transnational approach, third it never seeks to fix categories, and finally, and more importantly, it is centred on narratives of solidarity and alliance which are so important today in a world under the assault of financial capitalism, new politics of dispossession and colonization, and new politics of division and fragmentation.

— Françoise Verges (Chair Global South(s), College d’études mondiales, Paris)

The brave and thoughtful pieces in this book span across “intellectual” and “artistic” categorisations, and together make an important contribution not only to the field of sexuality/queer studies, but also to the ongoing battle to keep such studies from racist cooptation.

— Sarah Keenan (Lecturer in Law , Birkbeck, University of London)

The range and depth of these contributions make this an invaluable resource for students and researchers alike.  Above all, these essays highlight the fact that we can no longer ­assume or theorize an LGBT identity or politics that is constituted outside of racialization, coloniality, place and time.

— Momin Rahman (Professor of Sociology, Trent University, Canada)

In a world in which colonialism and neocolonialism make their marks on sexuality as well as race and class, this rich volume shows that decolonial thinking and doing cannot be done without an attention to queer politics.

— Roderick A. Ferguson, Aberrations in Black: Toward a Queer of Color Critique

table of contents

Foreword /  Decolonial Body-Geo-Politics at Large (Walter D. Mignolo)

Prologue / Paris Black Pride 2016 (Nawo C Crawford)

Acknowledgements

Contributors

Introduction (Sandeep Bakshi, Suhraiya Jivraj, and Silvia Posocco)

CHALLENGE

Ch. 1 /  Beyond Anti-LGBTI Legislation: Criminalization and the Denial of Citizenship (Sokari Ekine)

Ch. 2 / Post-colonial Perspective / Neocolo Chop Chop / Speak Out! / The Rabid Virus / The Oh My God Farce! / As If I needed a Reason / Nollywood What? (Mia Nikasimo)

Ch. 3 / Recounting and Reflecting on Resistance: The Dilemma of the Diaspora to Define (Raju Rage)

Ch. 4 / In Defence of a Radical Trans Perspective  in the French Context (João Gabriell)

Ch. 5 / On Doing Work, or, Notes from the Classroom (Humaira Saeed)

CREATE

Ch. 6 / Decoloniality, Queerness, and Giddha (Sandeep Bakshi)

Ch. 7 / To Be Young, Gay, and African (Diriye Osman)

Ch. 8 / This Is How We Soften Our Hearts (Diriye Osman)

Ch. 9 / Femininty in Men Is a Source of Power (Diriye Osman)

Ch. 10 / Theoretical Coalitions and Multi-Issue Activism: ‘Our Struggles Will Be Intersectional or They Will Be Bullshit!’ (Sirma Bilge)

ALL POWER ACTIVISM

Ch. 11 / Dismantling the Image of the Palestinian Homosexual: Exploring the Role of alQaws (Wala AlQaisiya, Ghaith Hilal, and Haneen Maikey)

Ch. 12 / Decolonial Activism in White French Feminist Land (Lesbiennes of Color [Sabreen, Moruni, and Aria])

Ch. 13 / Lesbian of Colour Activism and Racist Violence in Contemporary Europe (Fatima El-Tayeb)

Ch. 14 /  ‘Guarding Against Terrorism’: Testimony of a Singaporean Muslim Lesbian (Jun Zubillaga-Pow)

Ch. 15 / Stopping a Racist March—Activism Beyond the Incommensurability of (Homo)Sexuality and Religion (Suhraiya Jivraj)

NOW

Ch. 16 / Building an Inclusive Mosque: A Case Study (Dervla Zaynab Shannahan and Tamsila Tauqir)

Ch. 17  / Against Equality, Against Inclusion (Karma R. Chávez, Ryan Conrad, and Yasmin Nair for Against Equality)

Ch. 18 / Reasons For Optimism: Same Sex Marriage in Mexico City (Arturo Sánchez García)

Ch. 19. / (Decolonizing) The Ear of the Other: Subjectivity, Ethics and Politics in Question (Silvia Posocco)

Ch. 20. / QTPOC Critiques of ‘Post-Raciality,’ Segregationality, Coloniality and Capitalism in France (Paola Bacchetta)

Afterword / Interrogating QTPOC Critique, Imagining North-South Solidarities (Aniruddha Dutta)

Index 288

author bios

CONTRIBUTORS

Against Equality is an online archive, publishing, and arts collective focused on critiquing mainstream gay and lesbian politics. As a transnational collective of queer thinkers, writers and artists, we are committed to dislodging the centrality of equality rhetoric and challenging the demand for inclusion in the institutions of marriage, the military, and the prison industrial complex via hate crime legislation. Against Equality has produced three widely circulated anthologies on these topics, and our archive can be found at www.againstequality.org. We want to reinvigorate the queer political imagination with fantastic possibility.

Karma Chávez is a queer Chicana feminist teacher who grew up in rural Nebraska. She currently lives in Austin, Texas and teaches in the Department of Mexican American and Latina/o Studies at UT-Austin. She is author of Queer Migration Politics: Activist Rhetoric and Coalitional Possibilities (University of Illinois Press, 2013)

Ryan Conrad is an outlaw artist, terrorist academic, and petty thief from a mill town in central Maine. He is the co-founder of Against Equality. Conrad is currently a Sexuality Studies PhD candidate at Concordia University in Montréal. His work and record of community organizing is archived on http://www.faggotz.org.

Yasmin Nair is a writer in Uptown, Chicago and the co-founder of Against Equality.  Nair has been an activist and organizer in Chicago since she moved there in 1997. Her activist work includes gentrification, immigration, public education, and youth at risk.  Her written work can be found at www.yasminnair.net.

alQaws for Sexual & Gender Diversity in Palestinian Society is a civil society organization founded in grassroots activism that works toward social change with regard to sexuality, sexual orientation, and gender identity, and aspires to create a more vibrant and just society. At individual, community, and societal levels, alQaws disrupts sexual and gender-based oppression, and challenges regulation of our sexualities and bodies, whether patriarchal, capitalist, or colonial. See: http://www.alqaws.org

Walaa AlQaisiya is a doctoral student at Durham University, Department of Human Geography, whose research raises the question on meanings of queer(ying) spaces within the current Palestinian context and their relevance in relation to de-colonial  geographies and imaginaries.

Ghaith Hilal is an architect, designer, and Palestinian queer activist, based in Ramallah, Palestine. Ghaith has been an active member of alQaws’ West Bank leadership since 2007, and a board member since 2009, during which he wrote a few articles on queer organizing in Palestine in both Arabic and English.

Haneen Maikey is a Palestinian queer community organizer, co-founder and the executive director of ‘alQaws.’ Haneen is author of ‘The History and Contemporary State of Palestinian Sexual Liberation Struggle’ (The Case for Sanctions Against Israel, ed. Lim A., 2012); along with different articles about queer organizing in Palestine and Pinkwashing.

Paola Bacchetta is Associate Professor in the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies at University of California, Berkeley. Her recent publications include: Co-Motion: Situated Planetarities, Co-Formations and Co-Productions in Feminist and Queer Alliances (Duke University Press, forthcoming); Femminismi Queer Postcoloniali (co-edited with Laura Fantone [Ombre Corte, 2015]); and articles on queer decolonial analytics of power, social movements and space.

Sandeep Bakshi is a queer academic researching on postcolonial Anglophone and Francophone literatures and transnational decolonial enunciation of knowledge. He received his PhD from the School of English, University of Leicester, UK and is currently employed as Lecturer in English at the University of Le Havre, France.

Sirma Bilge is Associate Professor of Sociology at Université de Montréal. Recent publications: (co-author Patricia Hill Collins) Intersectionality (Polity Press, 2016), ‘Le blanchiment de l’intersectionnalité,’ Recherches féministes (2015), ‘La pertinence de Hall pour l’étude de l’intersectionnalité,’ Nouvelles pratiques sociales (2014), ‘Whitening Intersectionality. Evanescence of Race in Intersectionality Scholarship,’ in Racism and Sociology, eds. W. Hund & A. Lentin (2014).

Nawo Carole Crawford is a life long activist who has fought for the rights of women, lesbians, LGBTQ of color and also, as a pan African activist, she has fought for the empowerment of the African Diaspora. As a member of the Paris Black Pride, Nawo is now fighting for a greater visibility of the QPOC in France.

Aniruddha Dutta is an assistant professor of Gender, Women’s and Sexuality Studies and Asian and Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of Iowa, and also works with queer-trans community organisations in eastern India. Their book manuscript, Globalizing through the Vernacular: The Making of Gender and Sexual Minorities in Eastern India, is in progress

Fatima El-Tayeb is Professor of Literature and Ethnic Studies at the University of California, San Diego. She is the author of three books and numerous articles on the interactions of race, gender, sexuality, and nation. Before coming to the US, she lived in Germany and the Netherlands, where she was active in black feminist, migrant, and queer of color organizations.

Sokari Ekine is a Nigerian British queer feminist writer, photographer, researcher and activist. She is founder of Black Looks Blog which includes a ten year archive of LGBTIQ in Africa from 2004–2014. She is co-editor with Firoze Manji of African Awakenings: The Emerging Revolutions [2012] and with Hakima Abbas Queer African Reader [2013]. Ekine currently lives between the US and Haiti where she is in the process of creating a visual & textual archive on African Diaporic Spiritual Practices.

João Gabriell is an Afro-Caribbean trans blogger and writer based in South of France. He grew up in the Caribbean and came to Europe nine years ago. He is involved in local anticolonial struggles in Marseille and writes mainly on race, colonialism and their intersection with working class queer and trans people of color.

Inclusive Mosque Initiative began in 2012, in London and now has international branches (in Pakistan, Malaysia and Switzerland). It is a grassroots activist organization working toward ‘Establishing places of worship for the promotion and practice of inclusive Islam.’ IMI is characterised by female-leadership, inclusion and a justice-based ethos.

Tamsila Tauqir is a freelance policy consultant on issues of intersectionality and a professional materials engineer. She has held a number of professional and voluntary roles including at Interfaith Alliance UK, Women Living Under Muslim Laws, Safra Project and is also currently a trustee of Inclusive Mosque Initiative.

Suhraiya Jivraj is an activist academic and author of ‘Interrogating Law’s Religion: Race, Citizenship and Children’s Belonging’ (Social and Legal Studies Series, Palgrave Macmillan, 2013). Her work draws inspiration from and contributes to critical race/religion studies; gender, sexuality (and Islam) and de-colonial (queer) theory.

Lesbiennes of Color (LOCs) are a group of lesbians of color identified as political activists fighting against multiple oppressions: lesbophobia, sexism, racism, neoliberalism and neocolonial policies. Their struggle takes place in different spaces: streets, debates, cultural events, parties, public statements, filming archives, gathering solidarity.

Moruni is the co-founder of the LOCs. She is an Indian-origin lesbian feminist, based in France. Her activism is centred on anti-fascism and anti-racism. Connected to her country of origin, she is fighting the caste system, feminicidal oppression, danger of fundamentalism and lgbtqi discrimination by supporting movements of minorities.

Sabreen is the co-founder of the LOCs. She is from Djibouti and lives in exile for political reasons. Based in France, she is a lesbian feminist fighting colonial policy in terms of asylum and immigration restrictions imposed by the French authorities. Mutilated in her childhood, she draws strength from her activism and works as a documentary filmmaker.

Walter D. Mignolo is William H. Wannamaker Professor and Director of the Center for Global Studies and the Humanities at Duke University. He is associated researcher at Universidad Andina Simón Bolívar, Quito, and an Honorary Research Associate for CISA (Center for Indian Studies in South Africa), Wits University at Johannesburg. His books include Local Histories/Global Designs: Coloniality, Subaltern Knowledges and Border Thinking (2000) and Delinking: The Rhetoric of Modernity, the Logic of Coloniality and the Grammar of Decoloniality (2007).

Mia Nikasimo is a creative writer, essayist, poet and playwright currently working on a novella and other stories entitled Trans..She has also contributed to Queer Africa and the blog, Blacklooks. Mia’s work explores issues relating to transgendered experience, gender politics and disability as seen through a mental health lens.

Diriye Osman is a British-Somali author and visual artist. His writing has appeared in numerous publications, including ‘The Guardian,’ ‘Time Out,’ ‘Vice,’ ‘The Huffington Post,’ ‘Attitude,’ ‘Prospect,’ ‘Poetry Review’ and ‘AfroPunk.’ His critically-acclaimed short story collection, Fairytales For Lost Children (Team Angelica Press) won the 2014 Polari First Book Prize and was named one of the best books of the year by ‘The Guardian.’ In 2015, ‘Dazed & Confused’ named him one of the top ten LGBT writers to watch.

Silvia Posocco is an anthropologist and the author of Secrecy and Insurgency: Socialities and Knowledge Practices in Guatemala (AUP, 2014). Co-edited projects include Queer Necropolitics (Routledge 2014) and ‘Murderous Inclusions’ (IFJP 2015), both with Jin Haritaworn and Adi Kuntsman, and Queering Knowledge (Routledge, forthcoming), with EJ Gonzalez-Polledo and Paul Boyce.

Raju Rage is an interdisciplinary artist working with sculpture, performance, soundscapes and moving image. Their work interrogates the ways in which history and memory, in/visibility and the affect of politics, space, symbolism, stereotypes, ethnic codes, ideology and gazes impact the body, with a focus on  race, class and gender.

Humaira Saeed is a Lecturer in English Lit. Her research is focused on dissident desire in postcolonial fiction, and she is currently co-editing a journal special issue on fiction and postcolonial sexualities. She maintains a passion for fiction and film from Pakistan, and was editor of Race Revolt: a zine on queer-feminist race politics.

Arturo Sanchéz García started in the human rights field as a young activist in a feminist organization. Sanchéz García’s last research focused on abortion, same sex marriage, and judicialization in the Mexican legal culture. Sanchéz García is interested in theories of optimism and the notions of progress (and history) that emanate from sexual movements.

Jun Zubillaga-Pow is a cultural historian and musicologist specializing in Germanic and Singapore cultures of the twentieth century. He is the co-editor of Queer Singapore: Illiberal Citizenship and Mediated Cultures (Hong Kong University Press, 2012) and Singapore Soundscape: Musical Renaissance of a Global City (National Library Board, 2014). Currently, he is co-editing two separate volumes on Schoenberg studies and Islamicate sexualities.

endorsements and praise

Decolonizing Sexualities: Transnational Perspectives, Critical Interventions, edited by Sandeep Bakshi, Suhraiya Jivraj and Silvia Posocco, brings together a wide range of essays on queer decolonial theory and practices. They are the result of a collaborative transnational network and of a series of workshops, ‘Decolonize Queer,’ with the first one in Berlin in 2010.

‘A sustained reflection upon decolonial queerness is becoming increasingly urgent,’ the editors claim in their introduction. Indeed. The instrumentalization of gay rights in imperialist and colonial discourses, the rise of Islamophobia in the aftermath of murderous attacks in Europe, the call for an international alliance that masks the circulation of neo-imperialist and neo-colonial frames and sentiments which serve an increased militarization of public spaces and the control of the Muslim body, require more than ever a sustained critical analysis. The authors, who discuss these elements in different settings — Europe, Africa, South America, Middle East — present also alternative and radical forms of existence aimed to destabilize entrenched hierarchies.

The volume is more than timely. First, it contributes to the field of decolonial queer theory, second it offers a transnational approach, third it never seeks to fix categories, and finally, and more importantly, it centred on narratives of solidarity and alliance which are so important today in a world under the assault of financial capitalism, new politics of dispossession and colonization, and new politics of division and fragmentation.

Françoise Verges  (Chair Global South(s), College d’études mondiales, Maison des sciences de l’homme, Paris)

With white nationalist movements surging in mainstream popularity throughout much of the ‘modern’/colonial Global North, now is an urgent time for Decolonising Sexualities’ rich collection of grounded, anti-racist scholarly interventions.  The brave and thoughtful pieces in this book span across ‘intellectual’ and ‘artistic’ categorisations, and together make an important contribution not only to the field of sexuality/queer studies, but also to the ongoing battle to keep such studies from racist cooptation.

Dr Sarah Keenan, Lecturer in Law, Birkbeck College, University of London.

There is an emerging recognition at the UN and international LGBT organizations that the project of expanding sexual rights globally has become perceived as a form of western neo-colonialism.  To break this dichotomy, we need collections such as these that force us to confront the colonial heritage of western queer epistemology, and ask us to consider the specificities of the queer global in its own local terms, connected to and engaged with but not defined by the possibilities of the western colonial LGBT ontology.  Decolonizing our understandings of sexualities by decentering the west and giving voice and visibility to the assumed ‘other’, these contributions range across activism, politics, poetics and theory, urging a solidarity of approach among these realms.  The range and depth of these contributions make this an invaluable resource for students and researchers alike.  Above all, these essays highlight the fact that we can no longer assume or theorize an LGBT identity or politics that is constituted outside of racialization, coloniality, place and time.

Momin Rahman, Professor of Sociology, Trent University, Canada

In a world in which colonialism and neocolonialism make their marks on sexuality as well as race and class, this rich volume shows that decolonial thinking and doing cannot be done without an attention to queer politics.

Roderick A. Ferguson, Aberrations in Black: Toward a Queer of Color Critique

how to cite

Example using Chicago Manual of Style:

Footnote/Endnote:

Sandeep Bakshi, Suhraiya Jivraj, and Silvia Posocco, eds., Decolonizing Sexualities: Transnational Perspectives, Critical Interventions (Oxford: Counterpress 2016)

Bibliography:

Bakshi, Sandeep, Suhraiya Jivraj, and Silvia Posocco , eds., Decolonizing Sexualities: Transnational Perspectives, Critical Interventions. Oxford: Counterpress, 2016.