Sexual citizenship, nationalism and biopolitics in Putin’s Russia

Stella, F. and Nartova, N. (2015) Sexual citizenship, nationalism and biopolitics in Putin’s Russia. In: Stella, F., Taylor, Y., Reynolds, T. and Rogers, A. (eds.) Sexuality, Citizenship and Belonging: Trans-National and Intersectional Perspectives. Series: Advances in critical diversities (1). Routledge: London, pp. 24-42. ISBN 9781138805040

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The chapter explores the articulation between sexuality and nationalism in Russia, where sexual and reproductive rights have become increasingly politicised, as evidenced by legislation restricting access to abortion (2011) and forbidding ‘gay propaganda’ to minors (2013). Media and academic analysis has typically focussed on the ‘gay propaganda’ laws. However, an exclusive focus on LGBT rights overlooks the fact that recent restrictions on sexual and reproductive rights affect other social groups (particularly women). The chapter considers how restrictions on citizens’ sexual and reproductive rights are justified in the name of the national interest, and how family and demographic policies are deployed in the construction of ideals of nation and national belonging which are both sexualised and gendered. We draw on Foucault’s concept of biopower as a technology of power concerned with the control of social and biological processes at the level of the population. The chapter is based on a discourse analysis of legal and media texts. Theoretically, it offers an alternative perspective to debates about sexuality and nationalism (Puar 2007, Fassin 2010), which have typically emphasised liberal sexual values as a marker of national identities in the US and western Europe.

Item Type:Book Sections
Keywords:Sexual and reproductive rights; LGBT rights; Russia; nationalism; sexual nationalism; biopolitics; sexual citizenship; discourse analysis
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Stella, Dr Francesca
Authors: Stella, F., and Nartova, N.
Subjects:H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2015 Routledge
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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