Global Queer Research Group: Sexual Politics in the Era of Transnationalism, Diasporas and Postcoloniality


September 22nd, 2012 · Comments Off on GQRG FALL MEETING

It’s that time of year again!

The Global Queer Research Group will be having it’s first fall meeting. Everyone is welcome to attend! It’s a great opportunity to meet GQRG members and share ideas.


3:00 TO 4:30pm

2nd Floor Board room,


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I don’t Cross borders – the borders come to me and I dance with them

September 8th, 2012 · Comments Off on I don’t Cross borders – the borders come to me and I dance with them

I don’t Cross borders – the borders come to me and I dance with them

A poet, playwrite and refugee reflection on the borders of transition and justice

An inviation to YOU to learn about and join the wide range of networks and groups at the Liu Institue, including: Transitional Justice Network (TJN), Migration Network, Gloabl Queer Research Group (GQRG) and the Research Group on Gender and Sexuality in Latin America.

Thursday September 20, 2012

at the Liu Institute for Global Issues at UBC ,


Ari Belathar is a Mexican poet and playwright in exile. Between 1994 and 2001, she facilitated creative writing and popular theatre workshops for indigenous women and children throughout Mexico. She was also a founding member of the first Mexican community radio station during the student strike at the National Autonomous University of Mexico in 1999. After being kidnapped and tortured by the Mexican National Army in 2001 due to her work as an independent journalist and human rights activist, she escaped to Canada.  Ari has published poetry in literary journals and anthologies around the world. In 2009, Belathar published her first collection of poetry in English The Cities I left Behind by Radish Press. She is currently working on a play, La Danza del Venando, regarding the stories, lives and deaths on the US/Mexican border
Ari’s provocative poetry will be followed by a facilitated discusison by invited guests involved in the theory and practice of art, politics and change: Dr. Juanita Sundberg (Geography, UBC), Reverend Kerri Mesner (PhD, candidate, co-founder of GQRG), Matt Eisenbrand (Canadian Centre for International Justice) and Dr. Pilar Riano-Alcala (School of Social Work, UBC)

Please RSVP at

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Thursday, Sept. 20th
Rm 028, Jack Bell Building


The Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice (GRSSJ)
The Centre for Race Autobiography Gender and Age (RAGA)
& Critical Studies in Sexuality (CSIS)

is proud to host Mexican artist and activist Ari Belathar


Ari Belathar is a Mexican poet and playwright in exile. A participant in Artscape’s Gibraltar Point International Artists Residency Program, she has published poetry in literary journals and anthologies around the world. Belathar published her first collection of poetry in English, The Cities I Left Behind by Radish Press. Currently Belathar is working on the development of La Danza del Venado, a multidisciplinary play inspired by her own experience of illegally crossing the border into the United States as a child to reunite with her father.

Please join us for this unique and rare event.

Ari will present a collection of her poetry and writings, followed by a question and answer session.

Lunch will be served.



Subalterns among the Subalterns: LGBTQ Muslims in the U.S. and Canada

June 3rd, 2012 · Comments Off on Subalterns among the Subalterns: LGBTQ Muslims in the U.S. and Canada

June 12, 2012 5-7pm
Liu Institute for Global Issues 

Presented by Dr. Mahruq Khan, Department of Women’s, Gender, and
Sexuality Studies, University of Wisconsin – La Crosse

The rise of Islamophobia throughout North America has been duly noted, especially after September 11, 2001. What is often overlooked, however, is the nearly uniform response to such vilification of Islam — the showcasing of religious/community solidarity by U.S. and Canadian Muslims. Despite being political targets, mainstream Muslims continue to police one another by erecting rigorous boundaries around who is or is not an authentic Muslim — often resulting in the reinforcement of traditional gender roles.

This talk explores some of the experiences of people who identify as queer, as Muslim, and how they are reconciling their identities as LGBTQ Muslims. Dr. Khan’s research uncovers the religious and cultural homophobic rhetoric that gay Muslims encounter within their families, mosques and community organizations and how Islam, although often interpreted as anti-queer and heteronormative, can at times provide insights into how to confront and change the religious structures and practices.

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Excellent Show for the “Right to Refuge” Event!

June 3rd, 2012 · Comments Off on Excellent Show for the “Right to Refuge” Event!

Lobat Sadrehashemi, Elizabeth Csanyi, Dr. Sharalyn Jordan, Lesley Stalker, Dr. Peter Klein

We want to thank everyone who participated in last week’s “Right to Refuge”, a public forum on the c-31 bill. It was an amazing event!

For more information about this event, please check out the Right to Refuge organizer, Shayna Plaut’s article.

Here are some pictures of the event.

Organizer, Shayna Plaut addressing the crowd and opening the event.


Harsha Walia, Elizabeth Csanyi, Sharalyn Jordan, Lesley Stalker, Peter Klein, Lobat Sadrehashemi




Dr. Sharalyn Jordan

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May 2nd, 2012 · Comments Off on

“The Right to Seek Refuge in Canada” 

The Implications of Bill C-31

A public education session on the provisions of Bill C-31, Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act

Wednesday, May 30, 2012 – 7:00-9:00pm

World Art Centre, Woodward’s Building, 149 W. Hastings St.

Lesley Stalker, senior solicitor/barrister and Former Associate Legal Officer, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, will provide an overview of the obligations Canada has regarding refugees under domestic and international law, with respect to the proposed amendments of Bill C-31. This will be followed by a panel of people who work with the communities who are, and will continue to be, affected by the proposed changes  especially: LGBTQ asylum seekers, torture survivors, Romani refugees, and the Latino (particularly Mexican) community.   

–  Harsha Walia, co-founder of No One is Illegal, will discuss the impact on refugee communities in Vancouver, specifically the South Asian and Latino/a community
Lobat Sadrehashemi, refugee and immigration lawyer, Elgin Cannon and Associates, will discuss gender based claims·       

–  Elizabeth Csanyi, Legal Assistant, UBC First Nations Law Clinic, will discuss the impact on the Roma community·        

Sharalyn Jordan, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Education, SFU, Rainbow Refugee, will discuss LGBTQ claims

Followed by questions and discussion from the audience.
Co-hosted by the SFU Woodwards Cultural Unit/Vancity Office of Community Engagement, the Liu Institute for Global Issues and the Tyee.


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Thank you!

March 3rd, 2012 · Comments Off on Thank you!

We would like to thank our guest speakers, Dr. Suzanne Lenon and OmiSoore H. Dryden for their amazing, provocative and insightful talks at the Homonalism in Canada lecture yesterday. Also thank you to many people who came and participated in the engaged conversations. Lastly, many thanks to the Liu Institute and Critical Studies in Sexuality for their generous supports.
For those who missed the talk, the presentations were recorded, and will be posted on this blog soon.

It is amazing that we have successfully hosted a series of events (including the workshop by Val Kalende, Film screening with Dr. Chris Dolan, Queer U panel, and the Homonationalism lecture) in such a short time since we formed this group. We shall carry on with this momentum and look forward to working with the new members and colleagues. We will meet again soon to discuss other day-to-to activities (Reading group, research seminars, social events) for the rest of 2012, so please make sure to follow this blog or the GQRG listserv for updates!

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March 3rd, 2012 · Comments Off on

FYI. A letter composed by the concerned Liu Scholars, for which GQRG is one of the signatories.
The letter is scheduled to appear on national media publications.
For further information and discussion on the legal implications of the proposed bill,  please participate in the conference by the Canadian Refugee Lawyers Association at the Liu Institute on March 9 (see the link in the below).


Dear Editor,

In light of the upcoming public events exploring the proposed Bill C-31, including the national open conference on March 9th (with provisions for people out of town to participate via webinar) we are asking for this to be run as a letter to the editor/short editorial in Xtra West.

For more information

Thank you.

Liu Scholars Program, Liu Institute for Global Issues.

The right for people to seek asylum if they fear persecution on the basis of their race, religion, nationality, political opinion or social group — which has been interpreted to mean gender and sexuality — is a non-derogable right enshrined in international and Canadian law. The proposed refugee law would violate this right and would have serious detrimental effects on both the legal system and on the people who exercise their right to seek protection in Canada. One needs only to look to the United States and to the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe to see what has happened when they have decided to “tighten up“ asylum provisions: abject poverty for asylum seekers, families ripped apart and a dramatic increase in xenophobic violence and rhetoric from society at large. This is the response waiting for people who have fled their homes only to find destitution and exclusion in a place which promises freedom, safety and a better life — none of which responds to the reasons for which refugees are fleeing persecution in the first place. Although the changes proposed in Bill C- 31 are cloaked the name of “protecting“ Canadian interests, the fact is this law runs counter to Canada’s identity, because it directly erodes human rights, including basic liberty and equality rights as guaranteed under the Charter. These changes will undoubtedly cause serious damage to Canada’s proud reputation as a protector of rights and human dignity.

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Tomorrow! “Queer Kaleidoscopes: Disturbing Canadian Homonationalisms”

March 1st, 2012 · Comments Off on Tomorrow! “Queer Kaleidoscopes: Disturbing Canadian Homonationalisms”

The Global Queer Research Group (GQRG) Presents

Queer Kaleidoscopes: Disturbing Canadian Homonationalisms

A special guest lecture by

Dr. Suzanne Lenon & OmiSoore H. Dryden

When: March 2, 2012/10:00-­‐12:15
Where: Thea’s Lounge (Graduate Student Society Building)


In this presentation, OmiSoore and Suzanne will speak to their forthcoming edited collection entitled, Queer Kaleidoscopes: Disturbing Canadian Homonationalisms; they will also present on their own work:

In her paper, Suzanne will talk about homonationalism from the vantage point of a post same-­‐ sex marriage context in Canada, specifically implications of its ensuing sense of “accomplishment” and narratives of progress. She will focus her discussion on two sites: critique of a recent book on queer rights in Canada, and discussion of emergent themes from her new research project on activisms in Alberta that seek to build multi-­‐issue, multi-­‐identity queer politics.

In her paper, OmiSoore employs a queer diasporic analysis, one that takes up discourses of colonialism, blackness and racialized sexuality in the reading of Canadian blood constructed through blood narratives and blood donation. OmiSoore posits that queer diasporic analysis is an effective tool by which to engage with subjects that exist beyond normative single logics of identity, such as ‘just gay’ subjectivity. Beginning with an interrogation of the donor questionnaire, and the deferral of bisexual and gay men, OmiSoore seeks to make visible bodies and knowledge that are perpetually estranged and consistently unthought.

OmiSoore H. Dryden is a doctoral candidate (ABD) in the Department of Sociology and Equity Studies at OISE and the Collaborative Program in Sexual Diversity Studies at the University of Toronto. Her dissertation employs queer diasporic analysis to interrogate Canadian homonationalism through the sites of blood and blood donation. Her work has appeared in Women & Environments International Magazine (2009) and Atlantis: A Women’s Studies Journal (2010) and she has a forthcoming chapter in the book, Ruptures: Anti-­‐Colonial & Anti-­‐Racist Feminist Theorizing (2012). In partnership with Dr. Suzanne Lenon, OmiSoore H. Dryden is editing the collection, Queer Kaleidoscopes: Disturbing Canadian Homonationalisms. Prior to her PhD studies, OmiSoore worked in the areas of anti-­‐racism and sexual diversity as a private consultant and as a senior staff administrator at York University (93-­‐04) and the University of British Columbia (04-­‐06).

Suzanne Lenon is Assistant Professor in the Department of Women and Gender Studies, University of Lethbridge. Her research and teaching interests focus on critical race feminisms; law, gender and sexuality; and politics of nationalism, multiculturalism and queer rights. Her work has appeared in Canadian Journal of Women & the Law (2005), darkmatter (2008), and Social Identities (2011); she has articles forthcoming (2012) in the Journal of Intercultural Studies as well as Atlantis: A Women’s Studies Journal. Suzanne was a guest editorial board member for the issue ‘Women and Canadian Multiculturalism’ published by Canadian Woman Studies (2009). Together with OmiSoore H. Dryden, Suzanne is editing Queer Kaleidoscopes: Disturbing Canadian Homonationalisms.


For more information please contact:

Global Queer Research Group:

Special Thanks to the Critical Studies in Sexuality and the Liu Institute for Global Issues for sponsoring this Event!


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February 22nd, 2012 · Comments Off on

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