Do migrants have sex? Migrant masculinity and sexual emplacement

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Date/Time
Date(s) - 16/10/2013
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Location
Monash University, Clayton Campus

Category(ies) No Categories


Date: Wednesday 16 October 2013 
Time: 1:00 – 2.00 pm
Location: Building 11, Level 4, Room N402 CLAYTON

RSVP ~ reply email to Helen Forbes-Mewett

 

Professor Greg Noble
Institute for Culture and Society
University of Western Sydney

In reading the scholarship over many decades on migration, you might be mistaken for thinking that the success of migrants in fulfilling the economic and social functions of reproduction – the aims of immigration policies in many countries – was accomplished without recourse to sexual activity. This blindness has been partly addressed by increasing scholarship on gender and migration, but this literature has tended to focus on women’s experience, domestic violence and the sex industry, and in terms of gender subordination. Recent work around the ‘sexual turn’ in migration studies reminds us that migrants aren’t just economic categories or social problems, but humans with desires, emotions, love lives and sexual energies (Mai and King 2009), but the emphasis in this new research has been (with justification) on the experiences of gay migrants and sex trafficking. Ironically there has been an under-exploration of sexuality in relation to heterosexual men’s experiences. Drawing on research into Lebanese Australians’ experiences of migration and settlement, this paper focuses on a case study of one man – Abbas – whose sexual exploits I suggest represent practices of emplacement. This paper examines what happens to his sexual subjectivity through the experience of migration and his engagement with a different kind of modernity and a different kind of masculinity. It argues that sexuality can be a key mediating, indeed pedagogical, practice in the negotiation of relations with mainstream Australian society and the accomplishment of refashioning home.

Greg Noble is Professor at the Institute for Culture and Society, University of Western Sydney. He has been involved in research in multiculturalism for over 25 years, with a special interest in the relations between ethnicity and subjectivity; migration and cosmopolitanism; material culture and consumption; embodiment and habitus; and education and cultural complexity. He is the co-author or editor of several books: Disposed to Learn (Bloomsbury 2013), On Being Lebanese in Australia (Lebanese American University Press 2010), Lines in the Sand: The Cronulla Riots, Multiculturalism and National Belonging (Institute of Criminology Press 2009), Bin Laden in the Suburbs (Institute of Criminology Press 2004), Kebabs, Kids, Cops and Crime (Pluto Press 2000) and Cultures of Schooling (Falmer Press 1990/2011).