Sexuality, Intimacy and Family Lives
Jacqui Gabb (The Open University) and Ana Cristina Santos (University of Coimbra)
Critical reflections on sexuality and family lives over a generation (1990-2015)
Jacqui Gabb – The Open University
The international lesbian and gay association has identified the UK as one of the most progressive countries for lesbian and gay rights. This paper will explore how advancements in equality rights and positive social attitudinal changes are experienced across a generation (1990-2015). The narrative for this paper traces my personal journey into lesbian motherhood, interlaced with empirical data from three of my research projects that have examined sexuality and families. I suggest that equal rights are not automatic bedfellows with equality. While scholarly studies of relationships and sexuality have added significant insight into queer kinship, these typically wring out the very emotions that constitute the fabric of study. I situate feelings at the analytical heart of family lives, taking everyday experience and emotions as the starting point. Looking back over a generation, these momentary points of departure require us to reflect upon where we are and how we got here.
INTIMATE – An account of LGBT intimate citizenship in Southern Europe
Ana Cristina Santos – Centre for Social Studies, University of Coimbra
Despite significant personal, political and cultural changes in recent decades, the focus of mainstream sociological literature around intimate life remains the heterosexual, monogamous and reproductive couple, with little research exploring non-standard intimacy in Southern Europe. This presentation stems from INTIMATE – Citizenship, Care and Choice: The Micropolitics of Intimacy in Southern Europe, the first in-depth, comparative study on sexual citizenship in Italy, Portugal and Spain. Guided by the fundamental sociological question of how law and social policy adjust to and/or shape the practices and expectations of individuals concerning personal life, this research investigates processes of transformation of intimacy starting from life experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people (LGBT), taking into consideration different family and relational models.