Genocide and global queer politics

Waites, M. (2018) Genocide and global queer politics. Journal of Genocide Research, 20(1), pp. 44-67. (doi: 10.1080/14623528.2017.1358920)

142311.pdf - Accepted Version



This article presents a critical analysis of the relationship between the concept genocide and global queer politics, offering an original mapping and examination of the discourse of genocide in this respect. Starting from the beginnings of genocide discourse with Lemkin and the Genocide Convention, existing literature is analyzed to reveal circumscribed usage in relation to non-heterosexual lives. The methodology combines analysis of genocide discourse with case studies. The article maps and analyzes the historically shifting form of genocide discourse, including through attention to the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, and demonstrates how the patriarchal and heteronormative origins of this discourse continue to have effects which exclude queer people. This analysis is developed, in particular, in relation to the absence of sexuality, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity as group categories in the United Nations Genocide Convention. Interwoven with this analysis of discourse, case study analysis is used in relation to Nazi Germany, Uganda and The Gambia to establish genocidal processes focussed on homosexuality in each. The scope of claims for anti-homosexual genocide is thus extended in Nazi Germany and Uganda, and such a claim is initiated in The Gambia—while appreciating the complex relation of ‘homosexuality’ to African identities. It is also argued that new definitions of groups from the Rwanda Tribunal represent openings for some kinds of queer politics. The concluding section then draws on the discourse analyses of Foucault and postcolonial studies to initiate discussion of the potential discursive effects of invoking genocide in relation to homosexuality or queer politics, in particular contexts. It is argued that a greater consciousness of genocide in queer analysis and politics would be desirable, even while the existing terms of genocide discourse must be contested.

Item Type:Articles
Keywords:Queer, homosexual, holocaust, Uganda, Gambia.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Waites, Dr Matthew
Authors: Waites, M.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Journal Name:Journal of Genocide Research
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN (Online):1469-9494
Published Online:04 October 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
First Published:First published in Journal of Genocide Research 20(1):44-67
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record