Tuula Juvonen, Dr.
University lecturer, Gender Studies
Scool of Social Sciences and Humanities
FI-33014 University of Tampere
Phone: +358 (0)3 3551 7174
Homo Politicus – Sexual Citizens as Agents in Public Politics (2007—)
In my research project carried out within PPhiG I ask what kind of gendered and sexualized citizens are granted public political agency in Finnish political imaginary by looking at the functioning of publicly known gay figures, both men and women, in the Finnish electoral politics. Parallel to empirical study theoretical possibilities are searched for ways to imagine new spaces for queer political subjects in Finnish politics. The rediscription will provide more detailed insights in the problematic ways in which the concept of equality politics in Finnish context is limited to gender equality only, and it will raise concerned questions about the heteronormative limits and latitude of women in Finnish politics. Moreover, by introducing queer theoretical insights into current political discussions it can help us to recognize new queer modes of political activity, which may be indicative for larger changes in representative political activity.
Earlier research projects
From Thinking Archives to Doing Archives: Queer Action Research on Finnish Archiving Practices (2005—2007)
In the Academy of Finland funded research project From Thinking Archives to Doing Archives I was developing a Queer Action Research approach for documenting, evaluating and to theorizing the initiatives that have taken place in publicly funded Finnish archives and museums to incorporate records of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and trans people in their collections. I was also developing ways of increasing the accessibility and amount of such sources. The project included a web based course Using Archives for Queer History (in Finnish). In addition, there were plans for a web portal (in English) with texts about particular theoretical questions and ethical issues in relation to LGBT archiving; unfortunately this plan could not be carried out during the project.
Mental and Material Spaces in Constructing Local Homosexualities (2003—2005)
In this Academy of Finland funded research project I was theoretically developing alternatives to the implicit assumptions about urbanity which often dominate the US-based “out and proud” lesbian, gay and queer studies. This was done methodologically by exposing the constructed and contextual nature of homosexuality in smaller settings, where the effects of secrecy markedly form the constructions of homosexuality. I analysed representations of same-sex desire in the popular media and oral history interviews by paying attention to spatiality, both mental and material, and the social control of gendered behaviour.
From Welfare to Work – Poverty and Social Exclusion in a Migration Society (2003)
This project was part of the EU-funded Community Action Plan to Combat Poverty and social Exclusion. The issue at stake here was the definition of a common methodology for a comparative analysis of poverty and social exclusion in migration societies. We examined the barriers which hinder people from moving from welfare to employment, by evaluating the ways in which social policies and National Action Programmes succeed in reaching their goals and looking at the effects they have produced. This analysis was conducted by comparing European Union member states including Spain, United Kingdom, Austria, Finland and Germany.
Deconstructing “The Finnish Sex” (2001—2003)
This project belonged to a larger research program titled SYREENI, launched by the Academy of Finland, with a focus on Marginalisation, Inequality and Ethnic Relations in Finland (2001-2003). Deconstructing “The Finnish Sex” dealt with the prevalent heterosexism and racism in the Finnish culture and looked at ways for deconstrucing them. I analysed the questionnaires of quantitative sex research conducted in Finland, as well as journalistic practices around homosexuality. This research was one of the sub-projects in Tuula Gordon’s research project Marginalized Sexual Cultures: The Constructions and Deconstructions of Sexual Otherness.