Billy Holzberg

Billy Holzberg

LSE Fellow in Gender

Department of Sociology

Room No
STC S103
English, German
Key Expertise
Affect and Emotion, Queer and Feminist Theory, Migration and Borders

About me

Billy Holzberg is a LSE Fellow in Gender interested in the affective, sexual and psychic life of power. His current research on affective borders builds on his PhD dissertation and brings together feminist, queer and postcolonial theories of affect with critical border and migration studies. It examines the question of what the public reaction to the so called ‘refugee crisis’ in Germany can tell us about the role that affect plays in producing, legitimising and contesting the contemporary European border regime.

In his research commitment to understanding how the nation is secured through dimensions of sexuality, race and gender more broadly, Billy is also working on a range of collaborative projects. In these, he conceptualises the multiple ways in which sexuality and borders intersect whereby he explores the manner in which sexuality forms border regimes beyond the parameters of sexual identity, examines nationalist discourses of sexual violence between Germany and India, and interrogates the role that transnational anti-gender politics play in the rise of the global right.

Billy completed his PhD at the Department of Gender Studies at the LSE under the supervision of Clare Hemmings.  During his PhD he was a Visiting Researcher at the Institute for Research on Women, Gender and Sexuality at Columbia University in New York City. He holds an MSc in Culture and Society for which he was awarded the Hobhouse Memorial Prize for the best sociology dissertation. He is a member of NYLON, an active alum of the German National Merit Foundation and part of the editing collective of Engenderings, the LSE Gender Blog.


Book Manuscript:  

Holzberg, Billy (in preparation). Affective Borders: The Emotional Politics of German Migration Control. Book Manuscript.  


Special Issues: 

Holzberg, Billy, Holvikivi, Aiko and Tomás Ojeda (under review). Transnational Anti-Gender Politics. Special Issue under review with Feminist Review. 

Holzberg, Billy, Madörin, Anouk and Michelle Pfeifer (forthcoming). Sexuality and Borders. Special Issue accepted for publication in Ethnic and Racial Studies 


Journal Articles:  

Holzberg, Billy (forthcoming). “Wir schaffen das”: Hope and Hospitality Beyond the Humanitarian Border. Journal of Sociology.

Holzberg, Billy and Priya Raghavan (2020). Securing the Nation through Sexual Violence: Tracing Resonances between Delhi and Cologne. International Affairs, 96(5), 1189–1208.

Holzberg, Billy, Kolbe, Kristina and Rafal Zaborowski (2018). Figures of Crisis: The Delineation of Un/deserving Refugees in the German Media. Sociology, 52(3), 534-550. 

Holzberg, Billy (2018). The Multiple Lives of Affect. A Case Study in Transnational Surrogacy. Body and Society, 24(4), 32-57. 

Expertise Details

Affect and Emotion; Queer and Feminist Theory; Borders and Migration; Postcolonial Studies; Social and Cultural Analysis