The Transnational Geography of Sexual Rights

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2002

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Abstract

Among the signal developments of the last third of the twentieth century has been the emergence of a new politics of human rights. The transnational circulation of norms, networks, and representations has advanced human rights claims in ways that have reshaped global practices. Just as much as the transnational flow of capital, the new human rights politics are part of the phenomenon that has come to be termed globalization. Shifting the focus from the sovereignty of the nation to the rights of individuals, regardless of nationality, the interplay between the local and the global in these new human rights claims are fundamentally redrawing the boundaries between the rights of individuals, states, and the international community. Truth Claims brings together for the first time some of the best new work from a variety of disciplinary and geographic perspectives exploring the making of human rights claims and the cultural politics of their representations. All of the essays, whether dealing with the state and its victims, receptions of human rights claims, or the status of transnational rights claims in the era of globalization, explore the potentialities of an expansive humanistic framework. Here, the authors move beyond the terms -- and the limitations -- of the universalism/relativism debate that has so defined existing human rights literature.

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Scholars@Duke

Wilson

Ara Wilson

Associate Professor of Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies

My work is especially interested in two combinations: combining empirical research with theoretical reflection and connecting economic systems to gender and sexuality. I've taken these bridging projects in a few directions:

  • ethnographic fieldwork in Bangkok, Thailand, with interest in the Southeast Asian region (on hiatus since Covid19); 
  • Science & Technology Studies (STS), e.g., projects on medical tourism, infrastructure, and standardization;
  • a political economy of sex/gender, or queer political economy (QPE)
  • rigorous conceptualization of keywords, such as intimacy, infrastructure, or the history of gender itself. 
  • the history of the scholarly fields of Anthropology and Women's/Gender/Feminist Studies
  • transnational networks relevant to sex/gender, e.g., the UN-NGO orbit and the World Social Forum;

I have taught a range of undergraduate courses in Gender Studies and regularly teach Money/Sex/Power and Nature/Nurture-Sex/Gender, team taught with a neurobiologist. I co-ran a project on Transgender Studies and helped initiate GSF's courses on Introduction to Transgender Studies and Digital Feminism.

I have taught graduate seminars in core feminist areas (feminist theory; transnational feminist theory; research design; sexuality studies) as well as topical courses on Infrastructure; The 1970s (team taught); and Care Economies (team taught). While serving as the DGS for GSF for a number of years, I enjoyed mentoring graduate students on dissertation writing and entering the unnerving market for jobs and fellowships.

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