Love in times of superdiversity - negotiating difference and diversity in intimacy and sexuality

Vanessa Rau

Over the last decades, urban diversity in Germany has increased. The question of sexuality and romantic relationships of refugees has barely been addressed in academic research.

In public discourse, refugees’ alleged sexuality has often been portrayed in stereotypical ways, including Othering, orientalisms and racialisations. This ethnographic research project challenges this and aims to explore and investigate the nexus of migration and intimacy studying romantic relationships between migrants and non-migrants; particularly individuals with citizenship status and refugees in the context of Germany and beyond.

It enquires how migration regimes affect intimate lives and vice versa how difference, diversity and power are negotiated among partners. Using biographical-narrative interviews, the research seeks to understand why and how people commit to these relationships and how they deal with boundaries in terms of status, race, class, gender and religion in their partnerships and daily lives.

Through the sociology of emotions, post-colonial theory and theories of gender, this project presents both, a study of difference, prejudice and stereotypes as well as Love and emotions. It portrays how contemporary conditions of diversity shape intimacy, romantic relationships and Love.


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