From Orientalism to Homonationalism: Queer Politics, Islamophobia and Europeanization in Kosovo

In: Southeastern Europe

This paper investigates the convergence of European Union enlargement strategies and queer politics in the production of Islamophobia in Kosovo. Through a reading of recent homophobic attacks in Kosovo, it examines how the incorporation of lgbti politics into the eu enlargement assemblages generate a representational praxis of queer communities in Kosovo under threat by Muslim extremists. This paper proposes that the Europeanization of lgbti rights depoliticizes queer communities and singles them out for protection as victims of Islamic fundamentalism by creating binary and exclusionary Queer/Islam divisions that prevent the emergence of intersectional solidarities and subjectivities such as queer and Muslim. In this context, European financed ‘coming out’ projects gain a new meaning in Kosovo, one where the promotion of visibility for certain queer subjects works simultaneously to expose Muslim ‘extremists’. Queer acceptance in Islamophobic times, then, becomes the ultimate test of who can and cannot become European citizen.

  • Amato G. and International Commission on the Balkans. 2005. The Balkans in Europe’s Future. (Sofia: Centre for Liberal Strategies).

  • AmbroseD. 2009. “Beyond the Kosovo rainbow: Today’s gay people trapped in a deadly past” <http://dominicambrose.wordpress.com/2009/05/09/beyond-the-kosovo-rainbow/> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Export Citation
  • AtanasoskiN. 2013. Humanitarian Violence: The us Deployment of Diversity. (Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota).

  • AyoubP. and PaternotteD.. 2014. lgbt Activism and the Making of Europe: A Rainbow Europe? (London: Palgrave Macmillan).

  • BircaM. 2009. “eu visa policy accused of creating Muslim ghettos” <http://eurasia.ro/?p=26791> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

  • ButlerJ. 2008. “Sexual politics, torture, and secular timeBritish Journal of Sociology59 (1): 123.

  • ChamseddineR. 2012. “Amnesty International: nato ‘Keep the progress going’” <https://collateraldamagemagazine.wordpress.com/2012/06/01/amnesty -international-nato-keep-the-progress-going/>.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Council of the European Union. 2013. “Guidelines to promote and protect the enjoyment of all human rights by lesbian gay bisexual transgender and intersex (lgbti) persons” <www.consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cms_Data/docs/pressdata/en/foraff/137584.pdf> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • El-TayebF. 2012. “‘Gays who cannot properly be gay’: Queer Muslims in the neoliberal European cityEuropean Journal of Women’s Studies19 (1) 7995.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Embassy of the United States. 2012. “U.S. Embassy statement concerning violence targeting lgbt community” <http://pristina.usembassy.gov/statement_concerning_violence_targeting_lgbt_community.html> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • eulex.  2013.  “Indictment  filed  in  Kosovo  2.0  Case”  <www.eulex-kosovo.eu/en/pressreleases/0482.php> (accessed 30 September 2014).

    • Export Citation
  • eulex. 2014. “Kosovo  2.0  verdict”  <www.eulex-kosovo.eu/en/pressreleases/0568.php> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Export Citation
  • European Union Office in Kosovo. 2014. “Challenging homophobia: Building support systems for lgbt people in Kosovo<www.kosovoprojects.eu/en/content/challenging-homophobia-building-support-systems-lgbt-people-kosovo> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • FauchierA. 2014. “Kosovo: what does the future hold for lgbt people?” <www.fmreview.org/sogi/fauchier> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • FoucaultM. 1999. “The incitement to discourse491498 in JaworskiA. and CouplandN. (eds.) The Discourse Reader. (London and New York: Routledge).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • FowlerA. 2014. “Same-sex marriage legal in Kosovo?” <www.hrc.org/blog/same-sex-marriage-legal-in-kosovo> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • UnlimitedFree Press. 2011. “Kosovo 2.0 the other side” <www.freepressunlimited.org/en/news/kosovo-20-the-other-side> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Global Detention Project. 2014. “Hungary detention details at the global detention project” <www.globaldetentionproject.org/countries/europe/hungary/introduction.html> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • GoldenT. 2007. “Chinese leave Guantánamo for Albanian limbo” <www.nytimes.com/2007/06/10/world/europe/10resettle.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HalberstamJ. 2013. “The wild beyond: With and for the undercommons214 in HarneyS. and MotenF. (eds.) The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning & Black Study. (Brooklyn: Autonomedia).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HaritawornJ. K. 2012. “Wounded subjects: Sexual exceptionalism and the moral panic on ‘migrant homophobia’ in Germany135152 in BoatcăM. M.CostaS. and RodríguezE. G. (eds.) Decolonizing European Sociology: Transdisciplinary Approaches (Surrey: Ashgate Publishing).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HeilandA.CometT. and ReintkeT.. 2013. “Anne Teo and Terry go to Kosovo: What can possibly go wrong?” <www.fyeg.org/news/anne-teo-and-terry-go-kosovo—what-can-possibly-go-wrong> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HudsonG. M. 2008. “Europe with America3752 in MiessenM. (ed.) East Coast Europe. (Berlin: Sternberg Press).

  • Ker-LindsayA. and EconomidesS.. 2012. “Standards before status before accession: Kosovo’s eu Perspective”Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies14 (1): 7792.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • KovacevicN. 2008. Narrating Post/Communism: Colonial Discourse and Europe’s Borderline Civilization. (New York: Routledge).

  • KulpaR. 2014. “Western leveraged pedagogy of Central and Eastern Europe: Discourses of homophobia, tolerance, and nationhoodGender Place & Culture: A Journal of Feminist Geography21 (4): 431448.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • KuusM. 2004. “Europe’s Eastern expansion and the reinscription of Otherness in East-Central EuropeProgress in Human Geography28 (4): 472489.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • LuçiB. 2013. “The sex issue one year later: The debate is more important than the attack” <www.kosovotwopointzero.com/en/article/935/the-sex-issue-one-year-later-the-debate-is-more-important-than-the-attack> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ManalansanM.F. IV. 2003. Global Divas: Filipino Gay Men in the Diaspora. (Durham, NC: Duke University Press).

  • Massad J. A. 2015. Islam in Liberalism (Chicago: University of Chicago Press).

  • MepschenP.DuyvendakJ.W. and TonkensE.. 2010. “Sexual politics, orientalism and multicultural citizenship in the NetherlandsSociology44 (5): 962979.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MarkuH. 2014. “The enemy within: Kosovo’s moral crusaders” <www.kosovotwopointzero.com/en/article/1027/the-enemy-within-kosovos-moral-crusaders> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MindryD. 2001. “Nongovernmental organizations, ‘grassroots’, and the politics of virtueSigns: Journal of Women in Culture and Society26 (4): 11871211.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PapantonopoulouS. 2014. “‘Even a freak like you would be safe in Tel Aviv’: Transgender subjects, wounded attachments, and the Zionist economy of gratitudeWomen’s Studies Quarterly42 (1): 278293.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PuarJ. K. 2007. Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times. (Durham, NC: Duke University Press).

  • PuarJ. K. 2013. “Rethinking homonationalismInternational Journal of Middle East Studies45 (2): 336339.

  • QuinonesM. 2013. “Kosovo 2.0: Defining a new nation” <http://thenewcontext.milanoschool.org/kosovo-2-0-defining-a-new-nation> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • RahmanM. 2014. “Queer rights and the triangulation of Western exceptionalismJournal of Human Rights13 (3): 274289.

  • RexhepiP. (2016). “EUrientation Anxieties: Islamic Sexualities and the Construction of Europeaness,” in Krajna Zlatan and Blanuša (eds.) Europe Unfinished: eu and the Western Balkans in a Time of Crisis (New York: Rowman & Littlefield).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • RobelliE. 2012. “Faith led astray” <http://issuu.com/vanlennep/docs/religion_english?e=0/1100072#search> (accessed 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • RobelliE. 2013. “A place for space” <www.kosovotwopointzero.com/en/article/876/a-place-for-space> (accessed 30 September 2014).

  • RaoR. 2012. “On ‘gay conditionality’ imperial power and queer liberation<http://kafila.org/2012/01/01/on-gay-conditionality-imperial-power-and-queer-liberation-rahul-rao/#more-11088> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • RichmondO. P. 2009. “Becoming liberal, unbecoming liberalism: Liberal-local hybridity via the everyday as a response to the paradoxes of liberal peacebuildingJournal of Intervention and Statebuilding3 (3): 324344.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • RudakuA. 2012. “‘The night of sex’ and the lgbt cultural conflict” <www.kosova-sot.info/print/nata-e-seksit-dhe-konflikti-kulturor-mbi-lgbtne> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ScottJ. W. 2011. The Fantasy of Feminist History. (Durham, NC: Duke University Press).

  • SchulmanS. 2011. “Israel and ‘pinkwashing’” <www.nytimes.com/2011/11/23/opinion/pinkwashing-and-israels-use-of-gays-as-a-messaging-tool.html?_r=0> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • SeywardD. 2013. “Kosovo’s homophobia” <www.kosovotwopointzero.com/en/article/665/kosovos-homophobia> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • TekinA. 2005. “Future of Turkey–eu relations: A civilisational discourseFutures37 (4): 287302.

  • TodorovaM.N. 1997. Imagining the Balkans (New York: Oxford University Press).

  • VisokaG. 2011. “International governance and local resistance in Kosovo: The thin line between ethical, emancipatory and exclusionary politicsIrish Studies in International Affairs 22 (1): 99125.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • WesselsE. 2011. “Becoming Žižek’s neighbor: Alterity, affect, and network in popular culture and policy at the 10th anniversary of 9/11International Journal of Žižek Studies 6(2) <http://zizekstudies.org/index.php/ijzs/article/view/390/439> (accessed on 27 November 2015).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • WoodcockS. 2004. “Globalisation of lgbt identities: Containment masquerading as salvation, or why lesbians have less fun113 in FrunzăM. and VăcărescuT. E. (eds.) Gender and the (Post)“East”/“West” Divide (Cluj-Napoca: Limes).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • XharraB. 2014. “Radical Islam: The next blow to Kosovo<http://zeri.info/artikulli/35849/islami-radikal-goditje-e-radhes-ndaj-kosoves> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ZuinM. and ApostolidisK.. 2008. “On constitution writing: The case of Kosovo: Interview with Professor Louis AucoinPraxis23: 123128.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ZeqiriB. 2014. Documentary: stigma. Produced by Blerta Zeqiri <www.eulex-kosovo.eu/en/news/000495-a.php> (accessed on 30 September 2014).

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ŽižekS. 2008. Violence: Six sideways reflections. (London: Profile Books).

  • 4

     For more on this see Rexhepi (2016).

  • 6

    For instance in 2009the Young Federalist European Movement accused the eu of creating Muslim ghettos with its visa policies when the eu approved new visa regimes that allow Macedonian Montenegrin and Serbian citizens to travel into the eu but not Bosnia Kosovo Albania and Turkey—all majority Muslim countries. See: Birca (2009).

  • 7

     See: Richmond (2009).

  • 10

     See for instance Rao (2012).

  • 11

     See also Žižek (2008).

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 283 238 39
Full Text Views 202 188 8
PDF Downloads 27 23 6