Contested Intimacies by Derrick Higginbotham & Victoria Collis-Buthelezi
25 Jun 2015
A timely collection of essays, Contested Intimacies offers five unique analyses of the ways that sexuality, gender, and the law interact in eastern and southern African countries, primarily Uganda and South Africa.
The University of Cape Town holds an annual Celebrating Africa Month, a programme designed to honour the university’s connectedness and engagement in and around Africa. The various activities that take place during the month culminate in The Big Debate, a panel discussion on a topic of African relevance. The panel is made up of intellectuals from UCT and around the continent. Panelists who have taken part in The Big Debate over the years have all contributed written pieces to a series of books called the Celebrating Africa Series in the hands of the managing editor, Emma Arogundade, and series editors Prof. Harry Garuba and Prof. Evance Kalula. Contested Intimacies: Sexuality, Gender and Law in Africa is the latest title in this series, following on from 2014’s Big Debate, the topic of which was Sexuality and the Law.
A timely collection of essays, Contested Intimacies offers five unique analyses of the ways that sexuality, gender, and the law interact in eastern and southern African countries, primarily Uganda and South Africa. The authors argue strenuously for social critiques of the law that attend to the intricate intersections between different aspects of identity, whether class, race, national identity, within national, continental, and global debates about the status of gender and sexual minorities. In one way or another, all of the essays in this book also name patriarchy and its interest in validating heteronormative bonds as the chief motivation for anti-homosexuality and ‘decency’ laws in Africa. With such incisive research, Contested Intimacies creates a critical space in which feminists and LGBTI communities, along with their allies, can forge new strategies in the effort to create a more just world, whether at the level of immediate locality, nation, or the continent.
Siber Ink Publishers are proud to have collaborated with The International Academic Programmes Office (IAPO) and The Centre for African Studies (CAS), both at UCT, to make this publication possible.
About the editors
Derrick Higginbotham is a lecturer in the Department of English at the University of Cape Town, and he obtained his PhD in English from Columbia University, New York. In the past he has taught at Barnard College, Centenary College, as well as Columbia University where he was a Lecturer in the Core Curriculum. His book project, Commercial Passions: Economic Activity and Self-Control on Late Medieval and Early Modern English Stages, explores the ways that late medieval and early modern drama represents the commercialization of England’s economy as well as the socio-cultural impact that this economic transformation had on individual identity, especially gender identity. He also has a research interest in queer theory and gender studies, and the ways that such theories can help us to read literary texts, both old and new. At present, he is part of a six-month study of gender and sexual diversity on the African continent with the Academy of Science of South Africa, which will be published in 2015.
Victoria Collis-Buthelezi is a Lecturer in the Department of English at the University of Cape Town. She specialises in African and African Diasporic Literature with particular interest in Anglophone, Hispanophone and Francophone literatures of the Caribbean, African American and African literature and black radical intellectual histories. She received her PhD in the Department of English and the Institute of Comparative Literature and Society at Columbia University. Her current book project, Constituting a Black Archive, asks us to rethink black thought of the late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century by extending the borders of black modernity beyond the New World to include South Africa. She is co-founder of the Diaspora Working Group, a platform for the study of diaspora from the Southern Hemisphere, housed in the Centre for African Studies and the English Department. Currently, she is a series editor for Race and Resistance in the Long Twentieth-Century, a book series by Peter Lang Oxford.