Thursday, June 29, 2017

National Seminar on Problematizing Sexuality and Violence: Deconstructing Institutions, Norms and Narratives in India-University of Delhi, 23-24th August, 2017

Organized by
UGC-SAP, Department of Political Science
Research Network on
Feminist Engagements with Law and the State (FELS)
University of Delhi, Delhi

Call for Papers
Research Network on Feminist Engagements with Law and the State is an innovative enterprise of the Department of Political Science, University of Delhi, wherein we seek to involve versatile inter-disciplinary feminist approaches. Under the aegis of the Network, we successfully held a Workshop on ‘Feminist Engagements with Law and the State’ on 29th March, 2017 dealing with issues like, bodies and rights, sexual violence and sexual harassment, and ‘honour’ crimes. The workshop was also important for identifying themes requiring focus, suitable methodologies to adopt and mechanisms to bring academicians, activists and survivors in the country and abroad to a common platform of deliberation and discussions. This National Seminar is the second in line which would deal with issues like, sexual desires, fantasies and expression, violence against sexual minorities and marginalised men. 

This Seminar is planned under the CAS/SAP theme of Democracy, Norms and Institutions. therefore, the interlinking between the state (democratic),norms (laws and regulations) and institutions (especially, the institutions belonging to the Indian Legal System) with the themes and sub-themes would be an ideal way to author and present the papers. The rationale for choosing this theme is that in the last two decades, sexual and gender based violence have increased globally. One of the reasons behind this is insurrection of the  marginalised sections of society for a dignified life. Multiple narratives are challenging hegemony of heteronormativity internalized and implemented by the institutions of the state. These narratives are also questioning social and cultural norms prioritizing a binary and hierarchical notion of sexuality. Questioning and coming-out is suppressed through violence.

Here the laws are double-edged sword, used both for exploitation and empowerment. This seminar is an attempt to discover varied experiences of sexual/gender categories and to highlight that divisions are more contradictory, fragmented, shifting and ambivalent than the dominant public definitions of these categories suggest. There is an urgency to disrupt binary logic and its hierarchical oppositional constitutive force in addressing issues of sexuality. In this respect, to understand the role of legal system in India is crucial. Thus this seminar focuses on deconstructing institutions, norms and narratives to democratize sexuality and its experiences in India.

In this National Seminar, we intend to focus on the following themes and sub-themes:
1. Sexual Desires, Fantasies and Expression
a. Legal understanding of sexual desires, fantasies and expression
b. Sexual desires, fantasies and expression in heterosexual relationships
c. Sexual desires, fantasies and expression in non-heterosexual relationships
d. Sexual Desires, Fantasies and Expression in Art and Literature
2. Violence against Sexual Minorities
a. Sexual Violence
i. Sexual Violence by known persons
ii. Sexual Violence by State Agencies/Institutions
b. Physical Violence
c. Cultural Violence
d. Economic and Social Violence: Livelihood, skill development and social security
e. Legal Violence: Non-recognition of identity, relationship and property
entitlements and Coming out as a political act
3. Violence against Marginalised Men
a. Sexual Violence
i. Sexual Violence by known persons
ii. Sexual Violence by State Agencies/Institutions
b. Physical Violence
c. Cultural Violence: Food, dress, cinema, religious beliefs, lifestyle and others
d. Systemic Violence of exclusion and discrimination
e. Economic Violence
Any other issue not mentioned in the sub-themes, but connected with the main themes may also be considered.

Important Dates and information
● Last date for abstract submission: 5th July 2017
● Confirmation of selection of abstracts: 15th July 2017
● Full paper submission: 16th August 2017
● Seminar on: 23rd and 24th August 2017
● TA to paper presenters will be given as per UGC norms

Submission: Abstract, paper and any communication in this regard should be made in electronic form and should be sent to
Please click here for concept note (

Contact :
Department of Political Science
IInd Floor, Faculty of Social Sciences
University of Delhi
Delhi 110 007
Ph. No. +91-11-27666670