Call for Papers : Sexuality in Focus

The Graduate Journal of Social Sciences (GJSS) invites papers for its December 2012 special edition on Sexuality in Focus. This issue is inspired by the Network of Interdisciplinary Women’s Studies in Europe (NOISE) 2011 Summer School, which was hosted by the University of Utrecht (the Netherlands). This year’s theme was ‘The Miraculous (dis)appearing Act of Sexuality: Mapping the Study of Sexuality in Europe, 1960-2010’. Central to this summer school was the exploration of what has appeared in discourses of sexualities and what has been missing. The special issue aims to further explore this complex and multifaceted subject.

We invite scholarly contributions from postgraduate students, early career academics and activists engaged in LGBT, sexuality, feminist, queer, women’s and gender studies or related areas, to submit their work for consideration. Although NOISE summer school participants are strongly encouraged to submit their papers, we also welcome contributions from people outside of the NOISE network. Thus, we welcome contributions that offer important insights into debates surrounding sexuality. These include, but are not limited to, the following themes:

  • Sexualities in the making: discussions of the epistemological, methodological, and thematic issues central to the interdisciplinary and intersectional study of sexuality in Europe and beyond; (historical) analyses of heterosexual, gay, lesbian, asexual, bisexual, queer and transsexual discourses or movements.
  • Deconstructing sexualities: papers exploring the notion of (sexual) identity; the engagement with biological essentialism / determinism, social constructivism and newer insights in this debate.
  • Sexual politics: sexuality and (post)colonialism; sexuality and the formation of the nation state; multiculturalism and homonationalism; sexuality and family politics; state censorship. In this strand we also invite papers which seek to bridge the gap between academic feminisms and feminist activisms.
  • Reflexivity and intersectionality: how can we adopt a more intersectional approach to our work on sexuality?
  • We invite papers exploring the ontological and epistemological relationship between the researcher and the subject of study in the field of sexuality. This strand also explicitly invites papers which explore the intersections of race, class, nationality, religion and other social categories, with gender and sexuality.
  • Stigma and marginalization: we invite papers focusing on sexual practices or bodily aesthetics from an affirmative perspective. Papers might address BDSM; pornography; physical disabilities and sexuality; fatness and sexuality; or the sexual practices of other stigmatized groups.

A sixth strand is aimed at extending the debate on sexualities beyond the European / Western context. A selection of papers presented at the Arab Women, Media and Sexuality conference (University of York, May 2012) shall be included in a special section of this edition. Papers exploring the following themes are welcomed:

  • representations of Arab women’s sexuality in Western and / or Arabic media
  • approaches to sexuality in Arabic media
  • Arab women’s perception of their sexuality vis-à-vis the media