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Sexuality in African popular arts, literature and culture: the past, the present and the future 
Ifeyinwa Okolo (Federal University Lokoja)
Mary Nkechi Okadigwe (Nnamdi Azikiwe University)
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Language and Literature (x) Gender, Sexuality & Intersectionality (y)
Philosophikum, S92
Saturday 3 June, -, -
Time zone: Europe/Berlin

Short Abstract:

This panel seeks contributions that discuss the dimensions of sex and sexualities in African popular arts, literature and culture, from historical points of view and projections for the future.

Long Abstract:

African cultural productions have been on the increase in diverse mediums ranging from oral through written to digital formats. In all its expressions, there are codifications of sex and sexuality peculiarities in novels, theatre, cartoons, video films, as well as social media self performances. Historically liberal in its cultural considerations of sex and sexuality, Africa has, with the incursion of the Abrahamic religions become conservative and rigid. However, in recent times, the continent has seen multiple forms of tolerance and inclusiveness in sex and sexuality expressions within artistic creations. For instance, Nollywood is increasingly seeing LGBTQ movies in recent times - from Veil of Silence (2014) to the more recent Ife (2020) - despite the fact that same-sex relations is still criminalized in Nigeria. Literary works of various genres explore sexual inclusiveness. There are also several social media content creators across the continent who express their orientations, especially crossdressers and transgender folks, in ways aimed at breaking taboos and stigma around sex and certain kinds of sexualities irrespective of the homophobic tendencies of their governments. Against this backdrop, this panel seeks papers that discuss sex and sexuality in African cultural creations within different artistic genres with a view to x-raying ways in which African artists circumvent existing bottlenecks, envisage a more tolerant future for their communities, and also break negative views about people with non-heterosexual affiliations as well as transgender peoples.

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Saturday 3 June, 2023, -
Session 2 Saturday 3 June, 2023, -