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Teaching Sex-De/Constructing Bodies, Categories & Norms: Feminist Sex Shops in the U.S. & Sweden

Teaching sex_thumb

October 12, Monday
12:30 to 1:45 PM

Nina Lykke, Gender Studies, Linköping University, and director of the Centre of Gender Excellence (GEXcel)

41-51 East 11th Street, Room 709
between University Place and Broadway

This presentation draws from Nina Lykke’s ongoing research on alternative sex education in the U.S. and Sweden. These “alternative” sites and media for sex education include feminist sex shops and feminist/women/queer-owned companies that produce sex-toys and other sexual items (films, books, etc.). Lykke is interested to compare the selling and producing of sex-toys and sexual items in feminist/women/queer-friendly contexts in the U.S. and Sweden. She uses this case study to de/construct the bodies and norms of alternative sex education and to ask if and how feminist, queer, and anti-racist perspectives on constructions of bodies and norms manage to displace the normativizing power of traditional sexological categories in the teaching of sex. In short, do the sex education practices emerging out of queer, feminist, and anti-racist movements manage to challenge/deconstruct/resignify sexological categories and configure sexual bodies in new and alternative ways?

Part of the Brown Bag Lunch Series. Bring your own lunch – we’ll provide beverages!

Nina Lykke is professor of Gender Studies with special reference to Gender and Culture at Linköping University, Sweden, and in 2008 was awarded one of the university’s distinguished professorships due to her merits in research, education and management. Originally from Denmark, where she for 15 years led a Women’s Studies Center at the University of Southern Denmark (the center was the first WS center in Denmark), she has since the inception in 1999 headed the PhD program in interdisciplinary Gender Studies at Linköping University (the first PhD program of this kind in Sweden). She is director of an international Centre of Gender Excellence, GEXcel, as well as scientific leader of a Nordic and a Swedish-International Research School in Interdisciplinary Gender Studies. She has extensive international experience from numerous cross-national projects and networks in gender research and education in Gender Studies. From 2001-2005, she was managing director of AOIFE (Association of Institutions of Feminist Education and Research in Europe), and she is also a longstanding member of the lead-team of the European thematic network in Women’s Studies, Athena. She is associate editor of the European Journal of Women’s Studies and advisor for several other scholarly feminist journals. She is co-editor of the book series Routledge Advances in Feminist Studies and Intersectionality. A central focus of her research is feminist theory, including intersectionality studies, feminist cultural studies and feminist technoscience studies. She has published 145 scholarly publications, including 19 books in several languages, among others:

•    Rotkäppchen und Ödipus (Passagen Verlag, Vienna 1993)
•    Between Monsters, Goddesses and Cyborgs. Feminist Confrontations with Science, Medicine and Cyberspace (with Rosi Braidotti) (ZED, London 1996)
•    Cosmodolphins. Feminist Cultural Studies of Technology, Animals and the Sacred (with Mette Bryld) (ZED, London 2000)
•    Bits of Life. Feminism at the Intersections of Media, Bioscience, and Technology (with Anneke Smelik) (Washington UP 2008)
•    Feminist Studies. A Guide to Intersectional Theory, Methodology and Writing (Routledge, New York, forthcoming)

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