In the midst of the Boğaziçi resistance against the top-down appointment of the new rector, a form of resistance to state homophobia emerges and resonates with the changing dynamics of sexual politics in Turkey. Following President Erdogan’s demonization of LGBTI+ students as terrorists, police raided their on-campus office and confiscated rainbow flags as what they called evidence of an assumed connection to terrorist activities. This essay examines the process through which the LGBTI+ students at Boğaziçi University epitomize the recent queering of sexualities in Turkey with their destabilizing and nonbinary gender/sexual identities, political struggles against heteronormativity and homonormativity, and recalcitrant demands for creating safe public spaces of performative, intimate, and challenging visibility. State homophobia manifest itself as a response to the students’ demands and to the institutional culture that enables the making of a queer public through activism and resistance.
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Cenk Özbay; State Homophobia, Sexual Politics, and Queering the Boğaziçi Resistance. South Atlantic Quarterly 1 January 2022; 121 (1): 199–209. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00382876-9561657
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