Global anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics: Historical continuities, transnational connections, contested futures


About the Series

In recent years, social movements and political campaigns challenging women’s rights and LGBTQ+ equality have mobilized publics across the globe, from West Africa to Central and Eastern Europe, South Asia to North America. Even as some countries have witnessed an expansion of reproductive rights, marriage equality, and the legal recognition of transgender people, in many others these rights have been substantially weakened, diminished, or outright withdrawn. As commentators and academics have explored, “anti-gender” and “anti-LGBTQ+” movements often reach beyond national borders and draw upon shared strategic and material resources. Rather than consider such movements as independent national(ist) “backlashes,” this series of workshops seeks to explore their connections historically and geographically, as regional expressions of a well-connected and well-funded conservative coalition. And yet, these campaigns are not monolithic; while their actors may share similar goals, considerable differences can be observed in their political, cultural, and religious backgrounds.

Bringing together academics from across the humanities and social sciences, this workshop series asks: how did these movements come together, why, and to what extent are they in fact unified? Who are their central actors? Do they share a vision of the past, present, and future? What is their global appeal and why do they seem to be succeeding? 

This workshop series takes up these questions from three perspectives -- exploring them historically, transnationally, and pedagogically -- in order to illuminate the development of anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics and to think collectively about how to teach our present moment. Importantly, this workshop series endeavors to situate such movements, so far largely discussed through regional contexts, within a broader global comparative.

Upcoming Event:

Global Anti-Gender and Anti-LGBTQ+ Politics: Historical Continuities, Transnational Connections, Contested Futures

October 28, 2022, 10AM-7PM
In person: Swift Lecture Hall, 1025 E 58th Street, Floor 3 and online: Zoom webinar

This workshop queries the unlikely globalism of anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ actors, participants of movements that often criticize women’s rights and gender equality as cultural imperialism forced upon unwitting publics by global elites. What might explain the global reach of these movements today: shifts in mobilizing strategies, social media campaigns, or something else entirely? And what might account for the popular appeal of anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics in such vastly different political, social, and religious contexts?

For more information and links to register, please visit this page.

Keynote address:
Camille Robcis, Columbia University

Patrick Awondo, University of Yaoundé

Srimati Basu, University of Kentucky

Rodrigo Borba, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro

Lorna Bracewell, Flagler College

Mary Anne Case, The University of Chicago   

Agnieszka Graff, The University of Warsaw

Benjamin Moffitt, Australian Catholic University

Sharmila Parmanand, London School of Economics

Camille Robcis, Columbia University

Myungji Yang, University of Hawai’i Mānoa

Past Events

Anti-Gender and Anti-LGBTQ+ Politics in Central and Eastern Europe: Historical Continuities, Transnational Connections, Contested Futures

Friday, May 13, 11AM-12:30PM

To view the conference video, follow this link.

This workshop examines anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ movements in Central and Eastern Europe within the broader context of 20th century political and social developments. Should we understand the contemporary anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ movement in the region as a product of late state socialist gender politics, post-socialist anti-imperialist discourses, a conservative reaction to liberalism’s post-2008 crisis, or something else altogether?

For more information, follow this link.

Pedagogies of Populism and Anti-Gender Politics in Central and Eastern Europe

Friday, May 20, 2022, 10AM-12PM

To view the conference video, follow this link.

This collaborative discussion raises pedagogical concerns surrounding contemporary anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics. Programs in gender studies, gender history, and sex education face increasing attacks in Europe and in the United States. How can we as pedagogues, drawing upon our various disciplinary backgrounds, address the rise of anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics with our students?

For more information, follow this link.


This series is organized with the support of: Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies; Center for International Social Science Research; Center for Latin American Studies; Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality; Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory; Department of Anthropology; Department of History; The Franke Institute for the Humanities; Global Studies; The Pozen Family Center for Human Rights; and Transnational Approaches to Modern Europe Workshop.