Women’s Rights and Gender Equality in Turkey| “The Public Immoralist”: Discourses of Queer Subjectification in Contemporary Turkey

Eser Selen


This study examines the forms of queer subjectification that have been molded through regular acts of gender- and sexuality-based violence against LGBTQ+ citizens as encouraged by the dominant religious and secular discourses in Turkey. Within that context, this article explicates the discursive mechanisms at work in the statements that were made by politicians and journalists between 2002 and 2018. In those discourses, the qualities attributed to nonheteronormative sexualities, such as perversion and disease, are perhaps the most widespread means of negating the existence of LGBTQ+ citizens and claiming that their lifestyles are “immoral.” Based on a case study that incorporates the existing historical and sociopolitical background, which props up a heteronormative patriarchal culture, this study critically analyzes the discourses that have emerged in a state of moral panic regarding queer in/visibilities, dis/appearances, and aversions/subversions in the Turkish sociopolitical sphere.


LGBTQ+, queer subjectification, gender, sexuality, discourses, Turkey

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