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Sexuality and the Rise of China with Travis Kong on Jan. 11th, 2023

The Post-90s Young Gay Generation in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Mainland China (PDF download from here)

Date and Time: 2023/01/11 From 18:30-20:00 (JST)

Format: Hybrid (In-person and on Zoom)

Drawing on ninety life stories  elicited from 2017 to 2021, Travis S.K. Kong’s transnational queer sociological approach examines the changing meanings of same-sex identities, communities, and cultures for young Chinese gay men in contemporary Hong Kong, Taiwan, and mainland China. Based on his forthcoming book Sexuality and the Rise of China: The Post-90s Young Gay Generation in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Mainland China  (Duke 2023), Kong’s talk will address the complex interplay between personal biography and the dramatically changing social institutions in these three societies. Kong conceptualizes coming out as relational politics and the queer/tongzhi  community and commons as an affective, imaginative means of connecting, governed by homonormative masculinity. He shows how monogamy is a form of cruel optimism and envisions state and sexuality intertwining in different versions of homonationalism in each location. Tracing the alternately diverging and converging paths of being young, “Chinese,” gay, and male, Kong reveals how both Western and emerging inter-/intra- Asian queer cultures shape queer/tongzhi  experiences. Most significantly, at this historical juncture characterized by the rise of China, Kong criticizes the globalization of sexuality by emphasizing  inter-Asia modeling, referencing, and solidarities and  debunks the essentializing myth of Chineseness, thereby decolonizing Western sexual knowledge and demonstrating the differential meanings of Chineseness/queerness across the Sinophone world.

Dr. Travis S.K. Kong is Associate Professor and Programme Director of Media, Culture and Creative Cities in the Department of Sociology at the University of Hong Kong. He mainly teaches gender, sexuality, media and cultural studies. His research specializes in Chinese homosexuality and masculinity, prostitution in Hong Kong and China, social impacts of HIV/AIDS, and transnational Chinese sexuality.  Kong  is the co-editor of Sexualities: Studies in Culture and Society and the sole author of Chinese Male Homosexualities: Memba, Tongzhi and Golden Boy  (Routledge 2011) and Oral Histories of Older Gay Men in Hong Kong: Unspoken but Unforgotten  (Hong Kong University Press 2019). He has published numerous articles in journals such as British Journal of Sociology, Urban Studies, The Sociological Review, British Journal of Criminology, Qualitative Research, and The Lancet. (Dr. Travis Kong’s portrait by Yip Chun Hung)

This event is organized by James Farrer (Professor of Sociology, GPGS, Sophia University) and co-hosted by Sophia University Institute of Comparative Culture:

and Sophia University Graduate Program of Global Studies:


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