Theorizing sexual freedom is a difficult task; as a legal goal, it is neither universal nor absolute. Sexual freedom encompasses notions of liberty, dignity and autonomy. It also incorporates equality for sexual and gender minorities. This volume's treatment of sexual freedom includes issues of politics and power, as well as imperialism, national and other identities and the goals of scholarship and advocacy. The volume opens the difficult conversation of sexual freedom by discussing foundational theorists whose work has influenced conceptualizations of the relationships between sexuality and law. It considers hierarchies of sex in legal frameworks and hierarchies of nationalism in sexual-legal frameworks. The persistent issue of sexual identity is analyzed through the lens of asylum and gender identity. The notion of inevitable 'progress' toward sexual freedom is addressed and challenged. The volume concludes by examining legal education, judges and their discourse and professionals within the legal system.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction; Part I Opening the Conversation: Sexual traffic, Gayle Rubin with Judith Butler; Remembering Foucault, Jeffrey Weeks. Part II Hierarchies of Sex: Homosexuality and the PIB argument, John Corvino; A woman's right to be spanked: testing the limits of tolerance of SM in the socio-legal imaginary, Ummni Khan; Sexual democracy, Ruthann Robson; The dignity of sex, Libby Adler. Part III Nation: Queer times, queer assemblages, Jasbir K. Puar; Toward a gay-friendly China? Legal implications of transition for gays and lesbians, John Balzano; Beyond the brother: radical freedom, A.J. Barnard-Naudé; Sexual citizenship: articulating citizenship, identity, and the pursuit of the good life in urban Brazil, Tomi Castle. Part IV Sexual Identities: Constructing the personal narratives of lesbian, gay and bisexual asylum claimants, Laurie Berg and Jenni Millbank; 'At the time she was a man': the temporal dimension of identity construction, Robin Conley. Part V The Politics of Sexual 'Progress': Closet cases: 'conscientious objection' to lesbian and gay legal equality, Carl F. Stychin; Sexual politics and social change, Darren Lenard Hutchinson. Part VI Queering the Legal Profession: Queering legal education: a project of theoretical discovery, Kim Brooks and Debra Parkes; Judicial bodies as sexual bodies: a tale of two portraits, Leslie J. Moran; The construction of homosexuality in New Zealand judicial writing, Edward Clark; Be professional!, Dean Spade; Name index.
Ruthann Robson is Professor of Law and University Distinguished Professor at the City University of New York School of Law, where she has taught in the areas of Constitutional Law and Sexuality and Law since 1990. She is the author of several books about sexuality and legal theory, including Lesbian (Out)Law and Sappho Goes to Law School, as well numerous articles published in the United States, UK, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa. She frequently speaks about sexuality issues throughout the world.