A place where there is no need to explain: LGBTQ Muslims, collective disidentification and queer space in Brussels, Belgium

Alessandro Boussalem*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

This article discusses the communities of support that LGBTQ people from a Muslim background in Brussels build with other racialized LGBTQ people, and the spaces of disidentification and resistance that these produce. It does so by analysing qualitative data collected over a year of ethnographic research with LGBTQ people from a Muslim background in Brussels. In particular, the article focuses on the functions that queer de color communities serve in the lives of research participants. It shows how communication in these often takes place on a non-verbal level, in contrast to a 'pressure to explain' that marks participants' interactions in other contexts, and the sense of mutual recognition, understanding and political empowerment this communication produces. The article then discusses how the co-presence of LGBTQ people from a Muslim background and their collective resignification of cultural scripts produce counterpublic spaces that have the potential to disrupt social norms and dominant imaginations of difference.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1654-1671
Number of pages18
JournalSocial and Cultural Geography
Volume24
Issue number9
Early online date2 Jun 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jun 2022

Keywords

  • Sexualities
  • Muslim
  • Queer of color
  • Disidentification
  • Brussels
  • Intersectionality

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