Mittwoch, 23. Juni 2010

On behalf of the Kent Centre for Law, Gender, and Sexuality (UK)

The Kent Center for Law, Gender, and Sexuality celebrates and supports Judith Butler’s refusal of the Zivilcourage Prize at Berlin’s 2010 Pride celebrations. Butler's refusal was intended to draw critical attention to the deeply troubling ways in which racism, islamophobia, and anti-immigrant sentiment have been used by some Berlin-based LGBT organizations in their efforts to contest homophobia. Butler’s decision to highlight racist and imperialist complicity in European white gay movements is part of a larger project of challenging “homonationalist” agendas (Puar 2007) which intimately weave together state-propagated agendas of securitization with hyper-individualized, corporate gay pride events and organising. Significantly, Butler points out in her speech delivered on 20 June 2010 that gay, bi, trans and queer people can be used by those who want to wage war. Indeed, in the current political climate of a long-standing anti-islamic and anti-arab global “war on terror”, these interlaced discourses strengthen the power of state-based and international laws that legitimize the use of violent detainment, deportation, and the tightening of borders as well as imperialist invasion and occupation. These strategies are disproportionally targeted at Muslim, Arab, and other racialised individuals and communities. As a feminist organization, we applaud Butler’s high profile refusal, which lends support to other antiracist feminist legal-oriented organizations such as LesMigraS (, ReachOut (, and SUSPECT (Berlin) that continue to struggle daily against homonationalist agendas the world over.

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