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Gender ARC Public Lectures UL Spring 2014 – film screening and lecture from Professor Nicola Mai

Posted on February 18, 2014 by Administrator


Title:  ‘Queering Sexual Humanitarianism: Migration, Sex Work and (anti)Trafficking’

Date: Thursday, May 28 2014

Time: 19.00 -21.00

Venue: Charles Parsons Lecture, Theatre Main Building


Speaker: Professor Nicola Mai (Film screening and Lecture)Nicola Mai

Will screen his film ‘Normal’ which addresses the complexity of migrants’ trajectories within the global sex industry.


Lecture Abstract

The social protection of vulnerable migrant groups has become a strategic border between the West and the Rest of the world. Asylum and fundamental rights are allocated on the basis of well-rehearsed politics of compassion, whose credibility is assessed on the basis of the performance of stereotypical victimhood scripts. Anti-trafficking moral panics and social interventions play a strategic role within the deployment of these neoliberal governmentalities. By criminalising the involvement of young female and male migrants in the sex industry in terms of trafficking and exploitation, they enforce new biographical borders and hierarchies of mobility. By engaging in the global sex industry young migrant men and women challenge these borders and hierarchies because they are able to afford, morally and economically, ‘abroad’ cosmopolitan individualised lifestyles that are ambivalently queer in relation to established sexual/gender roles ‘at home’. This complexity and fluidity is not recognized in public debates and policies on the nexus between migration and the sex industry. Doing so would mean recognising the shared conditions of increased exploitability and fragmentation we all experience in neoliberal times, whether we migrate or not, whether we sell sex or not.


Film Screening