Research / Projects

Queer(y)ing Kinship in the Baltic Region

Queer(y)ing Kinship in the Baltic region is an empirically based and theoretically driven project in interdisciplinary gender studies that asks how non-heterosexual, or queer, families are made, represented and treated in several nations around the Baltic Sea at the beginning of the 21th century and what this might teach us about the meaning and status of kinship, family making and ideas of the future more broadly. How is (gender) identity, (national) belonging and (cultural) heritage understood, renegotiated and contested through (queer) kinship? What is reproduced in and through reproduction and family making and how are futures imagined? As the first project of its kind, this project focuses an understudied dimension of the livelihoods of sexual minorities within Baltic and Eastern European Studies; family making within and beyond legal recognition. Looking at and across three different national, cultural and legal contexts: Sweden, Finland and Poland, as well as with an additional setting studied in a Ph.D. project, it combines ethnographic and textual research on the effects of both new legislation and non-sanctioned forms of queer kinship, such as rainbow families, same-sex marriages, and queer community arrangements of care and inheritance. Through a unique research design based in intellectual kinship between project participants, all experts in queer theory, and combining data from existing and new studies, the project aims to make a substantive contribution to theories of kinship and family as they articulate with studies of ARTs and to making CBEES a centre for research on queer kinship in the Baltic region. Based in intersectional analysis, it attends not only to how (queer) kinship reproduce gender and sexuality but also to how questions of race/nationality, class and migration/citizenship are shaped by and shape such formations. In and through 3 senior research projects and a Ph.D. project, this collaboration proposes that by studying the state of contemporary queer kinship in the Baltic region, we gain new light on fundamental cultural and political questions. How, in short, do questions of (queer) kinship shape Baltic and European integration and modernization and what are the gendered and sexualized dimensions of political and economic “transitions” and imaginaries of the future?



Project Manager

Ulrika Dahl
Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor
School of Culture and Education

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Project start: 2014
Project end: 2017

Financier: Östersjöstiftelsen

Research linked to the Baltic Sea region and Eastern Europe: Yes

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