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University of Iowa News Release


Oct. 30, 2006

Brazilian Lesbian Identity Topic Of International Mondays Lecture Nov. 6

"Sexual Citizenship: Rethinking Lesbian Identity and Activism in Urban Brazil" is the title of the next International Mondays lecture given by Tomi Castle, a doctoral candidate in the University of Iowa Department of Anthropology. The lecture will be held from noon to 1 p.m. Monday, Nov. 6 in Meeting Room A of the Iowa City Public Library and is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.

Castle will examine the concept of sexual citizenship, the practice of identity politics and explore what identity-based political activism might look like if the end goal is full, sexual citizenship. She will consider a recent citizenship course conducted by a Brazilian lesbian activist organization in Campinas, Brazil. Castle suggests that sexual citizenship may encourage a broader, more democratic vision of inclusion than is seen in traditional identity politics. However, she continues, the discourse of citizenship in no way prevents the possibility that gays and lesbians seeking social acceptance blame themselves for their own exclusion from sexual citizenship. This runs the risk of re-inscribing preeminent notions of who should and should not count as citizens.

Castle's research focuses on the Brazilian states of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, and concerns questions of sexuality, political and social activism, tourism and urban space. She earned a master's degree in both Latin American studies from Vanderbilt University and anthropology from the UI. Her dissertation project examines the practice of urban slum tourism in a shantytown in Rio de Janeiro.

UI International Programs, the Stanley-UI Support Foundation and the Iowa City Public Library sponsor this International Mondays lecture.

For more information on this lecture, the International Mondays lecture series or special accommodations to attend this lecture, contact Buffy Quintero, International Programs outreach coordinator, at 319-335-0345 or

International Programs enables UI students, faculty, staff and the public to learn from and about the world. Its offices, degree programs and events provide life-changing opportunities on campus and abroad, heighten intellectual and cultural diversity, and give all university Constituents access to vital international knowledge. For more information, visit or call 319-353-2700. International Programs is part of the Office of the Provost.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Media: Lois Gray, 319-335-2026,; Program: Buffy Quintero, 319-335-0345,; Writer: Erin Vaughn.