Studies of non-heterosexual kinship in modern societies are well established in the Anglophone countries, dating back to such ”classical” text as Eshter Newton’s Mother Camp (1972) and especially Kath Weston’s Families We Choose (1991). The once original body of work has now become ”canonical” and a mandatory point of reference for subsequent researchers. Canonization, however, presents us with the obvious perils of hegemonization and domination of theories that perhaps do not necessarily fit into the diverse (i.e. non-Western) social and cultural realities. At the same time, it is hard to escape the existing theoretical vocabulary since scholars from various localities researching non-heterosexual families use them as the only pre-existing point of reference, and an inspiration for their own terminology and conceptualizations. Consequently, although studying ”their own” localities, they apparently have no choice but to use ”not their” language and concepts to capture developments and local narrations of queer families/kinship.

During the conference we want to concentrate on different understandings of queer kinships/relationships, and present more insights into the dynamics of non-normative kinship configurations in various geo-temporal contexts. Consequently, we seek to address such questions as the following:
1. How do non-heterosexual people define their relationships? What concepts are used to think through, understand, and describe non-normative kinship practices?
2.
 How are “queer families” socially framed and understood in various localities with different political significance of ”traditional family” ?
3.
 Does ”queer kinship/family” have the potential to become a (new) reference point for the LGBTQ activism, in the place or in conjunction with ”marriage equality” or ”rights politics”?
4.
 How do specific local contexts influence the debates on sexual politics in diverse locations?

Preliminary program is available here:
https://app.box.com/s/lhgi5q1a856gau82kqypkwkjgluh2csb

 

Queer Kinship and Relationships International Conference 2015 is organised as a part of the research project 'Families of choice in Poland' (2013-15). Please visit our website www.familiesofchoice.pl for more information about the project.