Event: Sexualities in Contemporary Southeast Asia: Ethnography and Critique – Call for papers (June 2012)

Cfp Deadline: 1 June 2012

Proposed Panel at the ASEASUK Conference,

Date: 7-9 September 2012
Venue: Durham University, UK
Convenor: Jun Zubillaga-Pow, King’s College London

The dialectics between the prevailing neoliberal system in Southeast Asia and the intricate lives of sexual minorities are posing discursive challenges to global political thought. While Western theorists, such as Judith Butler (2011), are calling for Queer Theory to be recast “at a critical distance from the neoliberal celebration and normalisation of difference”, scholars and activists working in the global South in general and Southeast Asia in particular are reviewing their strategic responses to these pertinent issues that has and will come to trouble Queer Southeast Asian communities now and in the near future.

Precisely because the appeal of advanced technological and transnational migration has remained virile especially for a developing Southeast Asia, queer subjects have been subsumed under a heteronormative economics without knowledge of their precariousness as individuals or as a marginalised collective. From the gay heterotopias of Malaysia and Indochina to the new world-making of Filipino and Indonesian queer artists and web-users, the identitarian administration of the state and her people has revealed non-exclusionary forms of governmentality.

Coming after the decades of warfare and civil unrests, this colloquium inspects how the citizenry of Southeast Asia has circumvented the might of the authorities and has made plausible a politics of recognition. It is vis-à-vis the everyday homosociality of production and consumption – cinema, music, literature and other social media – that Queer discourses become charged with a counter-hegemonic potentiality. It is in tandem with such a politics of redistribution that the limits of being queer or normal can be realigned.

This panel is interested in sexualities and their intersections with the critical tropes of Nationalism, Migration, Technology, Neoliberalism, Governmentality, the Arts and/or Queer Theory. Papers of 20-minutes are welcome from academics and postgraduates researching in Anthropology, Sociology, Geography, Languages and Literature, Media, Culture and Communication Studies, as well as other relevant disciplines.

Please send the title of your paper and an abstract of 250 words to the convenor Jun Zubillaga-Pow (jun.zubillaga-pow@kcl.ac.uk) by Friday 1 June 2012.

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