Love Troubles: Emotions and the Politics of Intimacy in South Africa and Brazil

Thursday, 12 March, 2020 - 15:00

Recent scholarship in the humanities and the social sciences has increasingly looked at emotions as relevant subjects and frames of analysis. Sarah Ahmed suggested that “emotions do things and work to align individuals with collectives – bodily space with social space – through the very intensity of their attachments.” Likewise, historical research has showed that emotions and affects are crucially constitutive of group identity, affective bounds, and, thus, boundary making.

In African Studies, the book Love in Africa, edited by Lynn Thomas and Jennifer Cole in 2009, has been a productive entry point into the topic for a generation of students now doing further historical and anthropological research. Marc Epprecht’s book Heterosexual Africa?, published in 2008, has been influential in shaping and encouraging historical research on queer sexualities in the continent. This panel will revisit Thomas’ and Epprecht’s work by bringing together young scholars working on new perspectives to love in Southern Africa.

Caio Simões de Araújo (Postdoctoral Researcher, Wits University): (Gay) Love in Times of Decolonization: the politics of sex and liberation in Mozambique

Paola Pandrini (PhD Candidate, University of São Paulo): Interracial Couples: Rethinking Affections and Whiteness in Brazil


Lebohang Masango (PhD Candidate, Wits University): Love, Digitality and Enclaving in Rosebank, Johannesburg

Discussants: Lynn Thomas and March Epprecht

This discussion is co-hosted with the Governing Intimacy Project.