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SCI Project Showcase Series: Queer Natures: Animals, Environment and Modern Sexual Knowledge Production (1860s to 1930s and today)

Dr Ina Linge discusses her project: Queer Natures, supported by the Societies and Cultures Institute (SCI).

This is the next event in the SCI Project Showcase Series, delivered by Dr Ina Linge (Languages, Cultures and Visual Studies, HASS). Her project, Queer Natures, was supported by funding from SCI last academic year 2023/24. See below for an overview of her project.

Event details


This humanities-led project explores how literary and historical sources envision models for good societies that centre diversity and inclusion. In doing so, it aims to create methods for imagining futures on our planet that are fair and just for all. The project investigates how German-language artists, scientists and writers (1860s-1930s) mobilised knowledge about non-human animals and their natural environment to create new ideas about the place of LGBTQ+ people in a fair society. In the German-speaking world, knowledge about sex, gender and sexuality emerged out of myriad scientific concerns, including Darwinian evolutionary biology and sexological understandings about the relationship between body and mind. Here, the organisation of the natural world, from reproduction to social structures, inspired complex and often contradictory models for human society. Queer Natures uses an innovative combination of methods, drawing on animal studies, queer ecology and the history of sexuality, to show that the natural world provided generative models for understanding the social role of LGBTQ+ people.

This project builds on an Arts & Culture Creative Fellowship and the recent exhibition hosted by Arts & Culture.

SCI funding enabled a research trip to Berlin to scope archival resources. It also enabled a period as Visiting Scholar at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment & Society (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich), the largest Center for Advanced Study in the environmental humanities worldwide, to facilitate knowledge exchange with international scholars working on environmental topics.


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Please note, this event is in-person only.


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