Call for Papers

Reminder: Call for Papers for the Historical Materialism Sexuality and Political Economy Network (HMSPEN) Stream

13th May 2019

Call for Papers for the Historical Materialism Sexuality and Political Economy Network (HMSPEN) Stream in the Historical Materialism London Conference

Historical Materialism Sixteenth Annual London Conference 2019

Claps of Thunder: Disaster Communism, Extinction Capitalism and How to Survive Tomorrow

Central London, 7-10 November 2019

Call for Papers, Deadline 15 May 2019

For all queries, email only please:

Historical Materialism Sexuality and Political Economy Network (HMSPEN)

Struggles, Struggles Everywhere: Sexuality and Sexual Politics in Global Contexts

For many, the 21st Century should be characterized by a period of the progressive recognition of sexual rights, equality and justice, reinforced by a respect for gender and sexual fluidity, reasoned boundaries of sexual morality and prohibition, and an enlightened approach to queerness. Instead, the litany of struggles against oppression and exploitation increase. In 2019 in Brunei,to far too little international outcry, Brunei instituted (and later suspended but did not withdraw) a death penalty of stoning for homosexuality. It is not the only example.  In Russia and Chechnya, gangs use violence to ‘convert’ gay men with the collusion of state policing. In countries that were formerly relatively open, like Indonesia, there are movements towards repression, and there are ongoing threats in a number of Subsaharan African countries. In the US and across Europe, a right-wing backlash is destabilizing the legal and cultural progress of non-heterosexual sexualities, simultaneously with commercial exploitation. Homonormativity and homonationalism have neutralized progressive politics rather than enabled them, and leading politicians like US Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg have led the incorporation of sexual politics into mainstream pathologies. Trans people face attacks from the right, notably a belligerent and prejudiced Trump administration, and from some feminists, who deny trans identity and reject non-binary and queer identities and activisms. Across the globe, sex traffickers exploit the women and children of poor countries for use by sex tourists and the rich. Sex workers are continually subject to violence by clients and legal frameworks that leave them vulnerable and precarious in their work. Queer people and sexual minorities, due to their lack of support from family and state structures, are particularly vulnerable to the broader political dangers posed by climate change and global economic turbulence.Struggles, struggles, everywhere………

Whilst HMSPEN is interested in any papers or panels that enhance understanding of sex and sexuality within the context of Marxist theory and politics, we are particularly interested in papers that address contemporary political struggles and assess the value of Marxist philosophical practice in understanding the terms of oppression and hegemony and exploring counter-hegemonic strategies and politics. Prospectivepaper and panel proposers are welcome to contact HMSPEN with ideas, as the stream will have particular panels it is keen to encourage and can advise on presenting your proposal. If you want to contact us, mail Paul Reynolds on

Please Note: Although we welcome preconstituted panels, after extensive feedback from previous years we are tightening up on panels with just titles or incomplete names. Panels should provide title, abstract and full names, emails of each participant and abstract/note of contribution (where relevant). Incomplete panel proposals will be put on the reserve list and may ultimately be rejected. We also reserve the right to reject certain papers in a preconstituted panel and to reconstitute panels as we see fit.