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Accepted Paper:

The LGBT rights and non-heteronormative lives: LGBT/Q grassroots activism in contemporary Poland  
Monika Baer (University of Wrocław)

Paper short abstract:

Drawing on fieldwork research conducted in Wroclaw, in this paper I analyze how the EU-related idea of sexual citizenship has been adapted (and contested) by LGBT/Q grassroots activists to initiate various forms of formal and informal collaboration and to fight for the LGBT rights on a local level.

Paper long abstract:

Since the early 21st century the idea of European sexual citizenship that envisions non-heteronormative persons as model (neo)liberal citizens, perfectly integrated into each member state of the EU due to its "Pink Agenda," has been widely criticized as symbolically violent (e.g. Ammaturo 2017). Yet, in contemporary Poland, where legal and cultural civil rights of non-heteronormative persons are basically not protected and right-wing populism and nationalism have been capitalizing on anti-EU and anti-LGBT stance, the EU-related idea of sexual citizenship keeps its emancipatory potential. On the one hand, the hopes that EU accession in 2004 would bring an end to discrimination and secure equal rights to non-heteronormative persons have not been fulfilled. On the other one, for mainstream professionalized LGBT movements the EU remains an important source of funding, the last instance in legal battles, and a symbol in political protests. While the EU seems not to be the primary point of reference in the grassroots settings where activist groups are neither large, nor professionalized, the idea of sexual citizenship is still an important reason for social and political mobilization. In the proposed paper I analyze how the concept of LGBT rights and its various ramifications have been adapted (and contested) by LGBT and queer grassroots activism in Wroclaw, a city in southwestern Poland. Regardless of discrepancies in their views about community building, political goals and strategies, groups and individuals are activating diverse networked solidarities and institutional collaborations to pursue initiatives aimed at transforming local forms of the oppressive present.

Panel P173a
Transforming the future: Gender/sexual citizenship and the horizons of hope [Network for the Anthropology of Gender and Sexuality]
  Session 1 Friday 29 July, 2022, -