Research group (Hamburg/Bremen), 2006-2008.
Questioning the heterosexual norm still provokes political and social resistance and rejection. Nevertheless, late modern societies are experiencing a proliferation of genders and sexualities. Representations of sexual and gender diversity pervade everyday culture, medial spaces, and to a certain degree even official politics. What does it mean to analyse this “new openness” as a moment of neoliberal governmentality and economy? Is there an alliance between neoliberal forces and sexual lifestyles or politics? If so, what is the price, who profits, and which kind of new hierarchies develop? The research group investigates the ambiguity of promise and coercion issued by the neoliberal demand for individualization. We strive for an up-to-date understanding of the relation of sexuality and economics. How does the precarisation of working and living conditions involve the sexual and connect it to other moments of social differentiation? Which new kinds of norms and hierarchies organize late modern sexualities?