Portsmouth School of Architecture

Mapping Sexualities and Urban Space

Straight Story Map V2
Image supplied by Phevos Kallitsis

Description

The aim of this on-going project is to explore the relationship between the discourse of sexuality and the spatial implications of such discourse in an urban context.

The question of mapping sexualities, gender and different identities, usually overlooked by the main discourse, has been a focus of the gender and queer (LGBT) studies. The initial steps in the area were using a metaphorical notion of mapping in the exploration of human sexualities and spaces (Bell and Valentine, 1995 and Pile and Thrift, 1995) - as there are difficulties mapping something with no precise boundaries. Despite these difficulties scholars have attempted to produce various representations of spaces of sexuality, with recent examples the Atlas mondial des sexualités by Cattan and Leroy (2013) and the Gay and Lesbian Atlas by Gates and Ost (2004).

Through my involvement – as a visiting Lecturer - with unit “Gendered Cultural Approaches of Urban Space” of the National Technical University of Athens, led by Professor Dina Vaiou, I started approaching various methods of exploring how sexualities are recorded in space; a research interest that looks into different ways of understanding urban space by analysing cultural products through the lens of the sexuality and gender studies.

The finding of my recent project are published in my article Sexualities and Public Space in Greece: A Celluloid Quest, whichfocuses on how two claimed to be LGBT themed movies map gay Athens, through a series of heteronormative stereotypes.