Call for Papers

Sexual Politics between the Netherlands and the Caribbean: Imperial Entanglements and Archival Desires

This special issue addresses the links between race, LGBTQ politics, gender, (post)colonialism and neo-colonialism, focusing on the relations between the mainland Netherlands, the Dutch Caribbean islands and Suriname. Paying specific attention to political and epistemological questions entailed in the use of archives, it explores how queer (post)colonial subjects have been redefining citizenship through cultural and political practices at different points in time – both in the (post)colony and in the metropole.

Foregrounding the legacies of enslavement and colonialism, the diasporic influences and migratory flows, and the intricacies of national identity and political sovereignty between the Netherlands, the Dutch Caribbean and Suriname, the articles in this special issue question the very borders of Europe, hence the boundaries of what counts as European (and Dutch) LGBTQ politics. The aim is to chart cultural and political practices emerging at the intersections of sexual politics and (post)coloniality, where alternative modes of citizenship take root.

Since the special issue addresses forms of sexual identity and sexual citizenship that are rendered invisible or deviant in dominant frameworks, the question of the archive takes centre stage. The articles place a specific emphasis on the uses of the archive by queer (post)colonial subjects themselves (in order to generate alternative modes of citizenship and belonging) and/or by the researcher (in order to gain access to invisible practices of sexual citizenship). The special issue as a whole works with a broad understanding of the archive, ranging from archives of feelings (Cvetkovich 2003), to colonial cultural archives (Said 1993, Wekker 2016), to material archives.

Through this thematic focus on sexual politics, imperial entanglements and the use of the archive, this special issue aims to address (but not limited to):

  • The ways in which queer (post)colonial subjects are rendered less modern, backward, hypersexual, invisible and/or in need of development, and the cultural and political practices that these subjects activate in relation to such representations;
  • The contribution of decolonisation movements to the (Dutch) sexual revolution of the 1960s and 1970s;
  • The formation of queer of colour collectives in the Netherlands, the Dutch Caribbean and Suriname during the 1980s and 1990s, in the wake of decolonisation and postcolonial migratory movements;
  • The contemporary intersection between race and sexual politics in the Netherlands as well as the Caribbean;
  • Ways of performing sexuality or gender and sexual identities that confirm, disrupt, reiterate, reject or maintain what is often posited as a ‘global queerness’ or ‘global gay’;


  • Deadline for abstract submission: November 1, 2018
  • Deadline for first version of paper submission: January 8, 2019
  • Deadline for final version of paper submission: March 26, 2019
  • Publication: June 2019