Queering Europe: nationalism and sexuality

Hosted by the LSE European Institute and Department of Gender Studies, as part of the series Beyond Eurocentrism

Online public event


Professor Fatima El Tayeb

Professor Fatima El Tayeb

Abeera Khan

Abeera Khan

Professor Richard Mole

Professor Richard Mole

Dr Alyosxa Tudor

Dr Alyosxa Tudor


Dr Jacob Breslow

Dr Jacob Breslow

This event will explore the seemingly paradoxical relationship between sexuality and Europeanness. Challenging the binary of tolerant West and intolerant others, the event will discuss how both homophobia and homonationalism are intertwined with nationalist projects across the continent.

From the EU parliament to pride parades and right-wing manifestos, supposedly appropriate and inappropriate attitudes to sexuality are hotly debated across Europe. Paradoxically, they are often mobilised to seemingly contradictory ends: either to condemn those deemed queer for being queer or to castigate those deemed homophobic for being homophobic. Sexuality is employed to define ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ ways of being European; whether that is in so-called LGBT-free zones or supposed liberal ‘gaybourhoods’ haunted by the folk devil of the ‘intolerant immigrant’. 

Meet our speaker and chair

Fatima El-Tayeb is Professor of Ethnicity, Race & Migration and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Yale University. Her research interests include Black Europe, comparative diaspora studies, queer of color critique, critical Muslim studies, decolonial theory, transnational feminisms, visual culture studies, race and technology, and critical European studies. She is the author of three booksand numerous articles on the interactions of race, gender, sexuality, religion and nation. Here current research projects explore the intersecting legacies of colonialism, fascism, and socialism in Europe and the potential of (queer) people of color alliances in decolonizing the continent.

Abeera Khan (@discoursekhala) is a Fellow in Gender and Culture at the Department of Sociology, LSE and a PhD candidate at the Centre for Gender Studies, SOAS, University of London. Her thesis, ‘On the fraught politics of becoming: a queer feminist analysis of queer Muslim subjectivation,’ examines the production of the queer Muslim subject in contemporary Britain. She researches and teaches on the subjects of diaspora, empire, race, and queer feminist studies. She has published with Feminist Review, lambda nordica, Religion and Gender, and Kohl: A Journal for Body and Gender Research.

Richard Mole is Professor of Political Sociology at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, University College London. His research focuses on the interrelationship between nationality and sexuality, with specific reference to Russia and Poland. He is the editor of Soviet and Post-Soviet Sexualities (Routledge, 2019) and Queer Migration and Asylum in Europe (UCL Press, 2021), an Open Access version of which can be downloaded here.

Alyosxa Tudor is Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in Gender Studies at SOAS, University of London. Their main research interest lies in analysing (knowledge productions on) migrations, diasporas and borders in relation to critiques of Eurocentrism and to processes of gendering and racialisation. Alyosxa has published on these topics with Feminist Review, Feminist Theory, Transgender Studies Quarterly, Ethnic and Racial Studies and Gender, Place and Culture etc. At the moment, they are working on their new monograph titled The Endurance of the Mare on histories of resilience and (sexual and state) violence in the Eastern borderlands of gender and Europe.

Jacob Breslow (@jlbreslow) is Assistant Professor of Gender and Sexuality in LSE's Department of Gender Studies. One of Jacob's many lines of research is on transnational and local sexual politics, and the conceptual and lived effects of ameliorating sexual harms. He has written on social media’s outsourcing of content moderation and the production of the digital life of coloniality; and on the relationship between #MeToo and homonationalism.

More about this event

The European Institute (@LSEEI) is a centre for research and graduate teaching on the processes of integration and fragmentation within Europe. In the most recent national Research Excellence Framework the Institute was ranked first for research in its sector.

Established in 1993, LSE Gender (@LSEGenderTweet) is the largest Department of Gender Studies in Europe.

This event is part of the LSE European Institute Series, Beyond Eurocentrism. This event series aims to explore how the shape and shaping of Europe – its political-economy, its political policy making, or its political culture – needs to be rethought in a time of the exhaustion of Eurocentrism.

Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSEEurocentrism

Featured image (used in source code with watermark added): Photo by daniel james on Unsplash

Podcast & Video

A podcast of this event is available to download from Queering Europe: nationalism and sexuality.

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