30 March 2007

CFP: (Un)Making Queer Worlds: Transformations in Asia-Pacific Queer Cultures at Melbourne University (Due: April 27 2007)

CONFERENCE: (Un)Making Queer Worlds: Transformations in Asia-Pacific Queer Cultures
Roundtable Workshop for Postgraduate and Early Career Researchers.

Graduate Centre, University of Melbourne

Parkville, Victoria, Australia (June 22-23, 2007)

Call for Papers

Proposal deadline: April 27 2007

Since 2000, intellectual interest in Asia-Pacific queer cultures has surged. This surge responds partly to the new visibility of non-normative sexual and gendered subjectivities in the Asia-Pacific and its multiple diasporas. Along with the new thinking around Asian/Pacific sexualities and genders come various contestations: in particular, the fine distinction between understanding A/P sexual cultures as part of an emerging ‘queer globality’, and the tendency to subsume them under a developmental model that places the ‘West’ as the vanguard of, or bad example for, the ‘rest’. Collaborations between queer studies, post-colonial studies, and post-structuralist critiques have shed light on the contemporaneity and historicity of each local queer culture in the Asia-Pacific. But although such effort to carefully describe geographical or local queer particularities is invaluable, locality does not subsist in an insular manner, but is always relational. ‘Glocal’ queer theory marries the specificity of locality with the context of globality. Additionally, the economic processes of globalisation have been accompanied by—indeed, in some cases actively promoted—mass migration, warm body exports and brain drains, particularly from the Asia-Pacific regions, that have temporarily and permanently dislocated individuals and families from their homelands. In such instances the ability to locate ‘local sexualities’ is brought to the fore just as it proposes new difficulties for the analysis of sexuality along national, regional lines, particularly in Australia. And if sexualities and genders are ‘glocal’, then so is capital. Understanding the nexus between glocal capital and sexual subjectivities through their localised and diasporic trajectories is, at bottom, about the political stakes of queer survival in a neoliberal world.

(Un)Making Queer Worlds tackles these important questions directly by bringing together scholars for a two-day roundtable workshop at the University of Melbourne, Australia. The workshop is particularly interested in proposals from postgraduates and Early Career Researchers (ECRs).

Confirmed speakers:

Associate Professor Peter A. Jackson will deliver a keynote address on Friday June 22. Dr Jackson is the Deputy Convenor and Senior Fellow, Division of Pacific and Asian History at the Australian National University in Canberra. He is the author and editor of numerous publications on genders and sexualities in Thailand and elsewhere, including Lady Boys, Tom Boys, Rent Boys: Male and Female Homosexualities in Contemporary Thailand (Haworth Press, New York, 1999) and Multicultural Queer: Australian Narratives (Haworth Press, NewYork, 1999).

Submission of abstracts:

What we’re looking for: We seek participants investigating how various Asia-Pacific constituents are (un)making trajectories of queer world and globality. We encourage papers that employ interdisciplinary approaches. We hope that (Un)making Queer Worlds will contribute to the ongoing elucidation of constantly evolving Asia-Pacific queer cultures and their global articulations.

Workshop format:

Featured participants will be asked to circulate their papers a week in advance of the workshop. Participants will be allocated a one-hour session to present a paper (20-30 minutes) and engage in discussion. As this is a postgraduate and ECR event, registration is free of charge.

Please submit abstracts of 450-500 words to

unmaking-worlds@unimelb.edu.au by April 27 2007.

Keep in mind that papers presented will be circulated before the workshop.

Circulated papers should be no more than 6000 words in length.

Important dates:

Proposals due: 27 April 2007

Speakers confirmed: Monday May 7

Deadline for papers to be submitted: Monday June 4

Papers circulated: Monday June 11

Workshop: Fri/Sat June 22-23

For more information, to register or to submit a paper proposal, please email:

unmaking-worlds@unimelb.edu.au or go to


(Un)Making Queer Worlds is a project jointly initiated by the Cultural Studies Program, School of Culture and Communication, University of Melbourne, and the Department of Gender and Cultural Studies, University of Sydney. We acknowledge the support of the Cultural Research Networkof the ARC and the School of Graduate Studies, University of Melbourne.