Transgender activism in Russia

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by Yana Sitnikova

LGBT issues in Russia receive a lot of attention from the media worldwide. However not all groups that are included in LGBT, or even broader LGBTQI, abbreviation are covered equally. While problems faced by Russian lesbian and gay people are considered in detail, queer, bisexual, transgender and intersex issues remain almost invisible. This article is aimed at filling this gap by describing the situation that Russian trans* people live in and our struggle as trans* activists.

On the Depoliticisation of Intersectionality Talk. Conceptualising Multiple Oppressions in Critical Sexuality Studies

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by Erel, Umut; Haritaworn, Jin; Rodríguez, Encarnación Gutiérrez and Klesse, Christian

Queer theory ofers itself as a radical epistemology to uncover pervasive forms of power, not only around sexuality but also around ‘race’ and transgender. Queer of colour theorists and some trans theorists have re- mained sceptical about these grand claims, and pointed out the notorious silence about racism and transphobia in the mainstream of queer theorising (Helen (charles) 1993, Cathy Cohen 2001, Jin Haritaworn 2007). Their critique echoes an older tradition of theorising multiple relations of oppression that has been particularly advocated by lesbians of colour like Audre Lorde (1984), Gloria Anzaldúa (1987), Gloria T. Hull, Patricia Bell Scott and Barbara Smith (1982; 1983). While the anti-racist feminisms of the 1980s have produced their own silences, especially around transgender and dissident sexualities, we will here argue that their call to positionality is vital in developing a queer theory and research practice that addresses the silences around raciality subject to this volume. This article is an attempt to ind a language for our dissatisfaction with the silencing of the knowledge productions and political activisms of trans people of colour, queers of colour, women of colour and migrant women in the UK and Germany, as at the same time it is about exploring the possibilities and limits of the concept of ‘intersectionality‘. In nearly two decades of critical debate about how multiple oppressions around gender, ‘race‘ and class interlock, ‘intersectionality‘ has emerged as a concept which promises a comprehensive theorising of various power relations. In this article we explore the potential of an ‘intersectionality perspective‘ for critical queer theorising and research practice. We argue that the concept has been used as an umbrella term for divergent debates and political projects, both radical and hegemonic ones. This is relected in its reception and dissemination in diferent political, cultural and historical contexts.

Out of place: interrogating silences in queerness/raciality

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Adi Kuntsman and Esperanza Miyake (ed.)
Raw Nerve Books, 2008

Out of Place asks daring and timely questions about the silence at the heart of queer studies. Discussing ‘race’ alongside ‘queer’ often submerges raciality within queerness, leaving racialised groups silent and silenced -‘out of place’. Out of Place creates a space where queerness/raciality are brought together in creative tension to disturb these silences: to hear the invisible, to see the inaudible.

Out of Place takes the reader through an inspiring, illuminating and at times painful journey. The book explores queerness/raciality in the context of the ‘war on terror'; corporeal and social practices in and of space;relations between visibility and politics; and cultural, literary, linguistic and theoretical mechanisms of translation. The papers in Out of Place cut across academic theory, arts, activism, the media and everyday life. All the contributors to Out of Place address queerness/ raciality as a theoretical and political tool to analyse and challenge their own fields, epistemologies and ontologies. This groundbreaking and fascinating book is not just about what happens at the intersection of ‘queer’ and ‘race’, but also about how this intersection relates to and animates other aspects of life.

Achille Mbembe: “The Negro, Figure of Human Emancipation”

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Interview with Achille Mbembe by Rosa Moussaoui

In his latest essay, Critique of Negro Reason, Achille Mbembe deploys an enlightening reflection on alterity, on the genealogy of the concept of “race” which is indissociable from the development of capitalism, and on what he names “the becoming negro of the world”. He points to a horizon of emancipation, that of a “rising of humanity” in a world that has shed the burden of race.

e-misférica 11.1: Decolonial Gesture

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Jill Lane, Marcial Godoy-Anativia and Macarena Gómez Barris

Volume 11 | Issue 1 | 2014

Decolonial gesture is: cuir. Transfeminist, Postpornographic. The textual shift from queer to cuir is, says Sayak Valencia, a gesture of “sexual dissidence and its geopolitical and epistemic displacement toward the south.” Decolonial gesture is: CUIR FAT POWER! with artist Alejandra Rodríguez, aka La Bala. It is Post-sexual with artist Katia Sepúlveda, whose 2007 work of that name offers a silicone dildo in a frypan, melting very slowly over low heat. The challenge to patriarchy pictured is both radical and glacial: the image of the upright penis melting on a frypan—a place of feminized domesticity par excellence—images the demise of patriarchy and also insists on the very slow, continuous process of social change. Its praxis as image is confrontational, oppositional: a bold portrait of feminism’s threat to patriarchy. Its praxis as durational performance is transformative: over time, the antagonism between patriarchy and transfeminism dissolves.

Decolonial gesture is, then, ¡transmarikaputabollomestizxmigranteprecarix!

Critique de la raison nègre

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Achille Mbembe
La Découverte. Collection : Cahiers libres, 2013

De tous les humains, le Nègre est le seul dont la chair fut faite marchandise. Au demeurant, le Nègre et la race n’ont jamais fait qu’un dans l’imaginaire des sociétés européennes. Depuis le XVIIIe siècle, ils ont constitué, ensemble, le sous-sol inavoué et souvent nié à partir duquel le projet moderne de connaissance – mais aussi de gouvernement – s’est déployé. La relégation de l’Europe au rang d’une simple province du monde signera-t-elle l’extinction du racisme, avec la dissolution de l’un de ses signifiants majeurs, le Nègre ? Ou au contraire, une fois cette figure historique dissoute, deviendrons-nous tous les Nègres du nouveau racisme que fabriquent à l’échelle planétaire les politiques néolibérales et sécuritaires, les nouvelles guerres d’occupation et de prédation, et les pratiques de zonage?Dans cet essai à la fois érudit et iconoclaste, Achille Mbembe engage une réflexion critique indispensable pour répondre à la principale question sur le monde de notre temps : comment penser la différence et la vie, le semblable et le dissemblable?

Necropolitics, Racialization, and Global Capitalism

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Historicization of Biopolitics and Forensics of Politics, Art, and Life
Marina Gržinić and Šefik Tatlić
Lexington books, 2014

This book argues that necropolitics are a dominant, yet obscene, form of politics that sustains contemporary racism (racialization) as a primal ideology of global capitalism and connects globalization and its modernist narratives directly with colonialism. The book is important for those—and this means almost all of us—working with relations of modes of life and global capitalism and with articulations of political and epistemological principles onto which capitalism organizes its reproduction […]

#FronterasInvisibles 2014

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l’Homenatge a les persones mortes a causa de fronteres, visibles i invisibles

La Mediterrània és un cementiri. Acció de Tanquem els CIEs, simulant amb creus, cartells i altres símbols un cementiri on es veuen les cares de persones que han patit per entrar a l’Europa Fortalesa o bé han mort pel camí. Instal·lació i informació, 3 d’agost, 2014, 9h-21h, Platja de Bogatell, Barcelona.

documentary video > Archives of the Non-Racial: A Mobile Workshop

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This documentary video recollects some of the statements by the participants of the JWTC mobile workshop during our travel through South Africa, on the importance of speaking about archives of the non-racial in relation to our political struggles for social change.

Alexandre (Sasha) White, Sarah Godsell, Kelly Gillespie, Roberta Estrela D’Alva, Angela Davis, Jorge A. Campos-Tellez, Jess Auerbach, Josslyn Luckett, Achille Mbembe, Tamara Levitz, Ayana Smythe, David Theo Goldberg, Federico Navarrete, Ruha Benjamin, Ghassan Hage, Zen Marie, James McMillan, Kirk B. Sides, Tjasa Kancler

Music by Neo Muyanga, performed at the Steve Biko Centre, Ginsberg.