Research on gender and sexualities in the Division of Literature and Languages brings together a dynamic and distinctive concentration of specialists whose work examines the ways in which gender and sexual categories are constructed historically and are the subject of contemporary social and political controversy. Our areas of expertise include queer theory in both Anglophone and non-Anglophone contexts; postcolonial feminisms; same-sex partnerships and sexual citizenship; queer cinemas; gender and urban youth cultures; discourses and representations of masculinity in popular culture; gender and religion; and lesbian Victorian poetics and visual cultures.
Within the broad sphere of visual cultures, Guillermo Olivera’s Carnegie-funded research on non-heteronormative modes of representation is complemented by Cristina Johnston’s collaborative work with Florian Grandena (University of Ottawa) on the hypervisibilities of sexualities in French and Francophone contexts and by Jason Hartford’s examinations of religious archetypes and queer masculinities. Fiona Barclay and Michael Marten bring questions of feminism, gender and sexualities into dialogue with the postcolonial in the context of Franco-Algerian relations (Barclay) and in the Middle East (Marten). Alison Jasper’s critical interrogation of female subjectivity and Soledad Montanez’s analysis of women’s writing, art and cinema in the Latin American context unfold alongside questions of the representation of masculinities in discourse and visual cultural forms as they are taken up in relation to men’s magazines by Bethan Benwell, in the field of Spanish cinema by Ann Davies and by Bill Marshall in the context of the contemporary parkour movement. Our work spans a wide range of temporal and spatial foci and seeks to forge connections between the study of genders and sexualities and other approaches from across the field of the Humanities.
2013 saw the appointment of two Impact Research Fellows in the Division of Literature and Languages, both of whom are developing projects that further develop and expand upon our expertise in these areas. Elizabeth Anderson’s examinations of feminist theory and theology and Sarah Parker’s considerations of the lesbian muse and the role of photography in the development of women’s public image in the Victorian era provide new lines of enquiry for research in the Gender and Sexualities grouping to develop.
We publish widely across these areas of study as well as hosting conferences and study days on related themes (Hypervisibilities in 2008; a Didier Eribon Study Day in 2011; Latin American Women Writers, Artists and Filmmakers in 2012).