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

Entries from February 2012

February 22nd, 2012 · Comments Off on

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Homonationalism in Canada: Guest Lecture

February 22nd, 2012 · Comments Off on Homonationalism in Canada: Guest Lecture

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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Tories move to curb ‘bogus’ refugees

February 18th, 2012 · Comments Off on Tories move to curb ‘bogus’ refugees

**An Update and Correction**
I presented to the standing committee on citizenship and immigration in May 2010, to speak against provisions in Bill C-11, that would have been particularly harmful to QLGBT ayslum seekers. Some of these provisions were removed in June 2010 before the Bill passed.

Just this week –Feb 16th–Minister Kenney tabled an omnibus bill that brings back many of the most problematic aspects of C-11, and also includes clauses taken from Bill C-4 that broadens the use of detention. It allows detention for a full year without review.

There has been no consultation or community review of the tabled legislation–and it appears that the Conservatives are pushing to pass it before June. Hope you and others will decide to write or speak to your MPs. has suggestions and talking points. Important to voice our objections to this regressive piece of legislation



This from Sharalyn Jordan of SFU/Rainbow Refugee Committee; who was present at the parliament earlier this week to speak against the proposed changes as they would have detrimental effects on already vulnerable queer refugee seekers.

For more information and action plans, please contact Sharalyn at

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A Special Guest Lecture: ‘Homonationalim in Canada’

February 9th, 2012 · Comments Off on A Special Guest Lecture: ‘Homonationalim in Canada’

The Global Queer Research Group (GQRG) Presents 

Homonationalism in Canada

A special guest lecture by
Dr. Suzanne Lenon (Lethbridge) &

 Omisoore Dryden (Toronto/OISE)

March 2nd,

Thea’s Lounge,
Graduate Student Society Building

 In this special guest lecture, Dr. Suzanne Lenon and Omisoore Dryden will present contemporary scholarship concerning the nationalization of sexual citizenship and its problematics in the context of Canadian queer movements. The notion of “homonationalism,” first formulated by Jasbir Puar (2007), refers to the political processes in which queer visibility and protection of same-sex relationships are used to articulate the ‘exceptionality’ of Western modern nations, effectively placing regions and bodies of cultural Other as pre-modern, and homophobic. Such nationalistic imaginary has produced perceptions of ethnic diasporas in Canada as a threat to sexual liberalism, generating racist and exclusionary discourses against immigrants and queer people of color in local lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities and a wider public sphere. In conjunction with the publication of Queer Kaleidoscopes: Disturbing Homonationalism in Canada (UBC Press, 2012), Dr. Suzanne Lenon and Omisoore Dryden  will  present their works on the topic, as well as the significance of an anti-homonationalist approach to queer scholarship in a global context. Please join us for food and refreshments after the event!

Please RSVP 

For more information please contact:
Global Queer Research Group:
Or check out the GQRG’s website:


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

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February 9th, 2012 · Comments Off on

The Global Queer Research Group


Transitional Justice Network


Presents Dr. Chris Dolan 



Dr. Chris Dolan is Director of the Refugee Law Project (RLP), a community outreach project of the School of Law, Makerere University, Kampala. Chris is also the project coordinator for the RLP’s work on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence & Persecution, a position which brings him into regular contact with survivors of sexual violence, sexual minority groups, and refugee sex workers (male and female). Chris has worked in Uganda for six of the last 11 years, as well as spending a year in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (2005), a year in Mozambique (1996), and five years in South Africa (1992-1996). His recent book, Social Torture; The Case of Northern Uganda, 1986-2006 (Berghahn Books, 2009), is widely regarded as one of the essential references for those interested in understanding the situation in Uganda as well as gender dynamics and masculinities in conflict and post-conflict settings. Chris has also served as a country expert for LGBT asylum cases from sub-Saharan Africa since 2002, and currently chairs the Ugandan Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights & Constitutional Law, established initially to combat the notorious Anti-Homosexuality Bill which was tabled in October 2009, and more recently extending its focus towards sexual rights advocacy more broadly.

The TJN and GQRG will be hosting two public events with Dr. Chris Dolan

“Queering Transitional Justice?”

Engaging and Exploring Transitional Justice with Sexual and Gender Minorities Workshop

Lead by Chris Dolan


Monday, February 27 10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
3rd Floor Board Room Liu Institute for Global Issues

Violence against sexual and gender minorities in periods of conflict, instability, and social unrest has gotten increased attention by the international media. While much has been written on anti-queer violence and oppression of sexual and gender minorities around the world, this awareness is not reflected in the field of transitional justice. This gap is particularly alarming since homophobia, anti-queer violence, hegemonic masculinities, mass militarisation and sexual violence in conflict settings all intersect. This workshop is an amazing opportunity for scholars and activists who are interested in identifying the obstacles sexual and gender minorities face in overcoming embedded homophobia, homonormativity and heteronormativity in transitional justice processes, and aims to generate some entry points to addressing these challenges. The workshop is free and open to the public, but is limited to only 20 participants.

Please RSVP here 



“They Slept With Me”
A Film Screening and Special Talk

With Chris Dolan

Gender Violence Against Men in the Great Lakes region and the Challenges it poses for Transitional Justice


Monday, February 27

7:00 PM – 9:00 PM Multipurpose Room
The Liu Institute for Global Issues

Chris Dolan will be presenting a brand new Refugee Law Project documentary on sexual violence. Entitled “They Slept With Me”, the film builds on the earlier “Gender Against Men” (2009), to further expose and explore the hidden world of sexual and gender-based violence against men in the conflicts of the Great Lakes Region. The pain and anger in the testimonies of several male survivors of sexual violence in the northern Uganda conflict raise burning questions about the prospects of success in their search for justice.

After the film presentations, all are invited to join Chris in a discussion about the critical issues raised by the documentaries, as well as to ask further questions about the Refugee Law Project’s day-to-day work with male survivors of sexual violence.

This event is free and open to the public.

Please RSVP here


For more information, please contact

Katherine Fobear


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