International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender



Chandra Frank, MPhil, PhD Candidate
Chandra holds an MPhil in African studies from the University of Cape Town and is currently a PhD candidate at Goldsmiths College in London. Her research focuses on the embodiment of resistance within the black feminist movement in the Netherlands. Together with Sarah Klerks, she runs Gerilja Kurating (G/K), an online magazine that explores the meaning and presence of black visual arts today. For Framed Framed, she is currently working toward an exhibition that critically explores the relationship between South Africa and the Netherlands. The module she coordinates for SIT focuses on the history of feminism in the Netherlands, with a particular focus on the black feminist movement, transnational feminism, and the shift to material feminism with its focus on the body. Her module includes a field visit to ATRIA and the Bijlmerpark Theater, a cultural center for and by the various communities living in the Southeast of Amsterdam.

Raisa Hehenkamp
Raisa studied political science at the University of Amsterdam and holds an MS in equality and human rights. During her studies, she became increasingly interested in structural inequalities within society, both academically and by doing volunteer work. Noticing the broad academic literature on queer theory but a lack of examination on queer people and their lives and experiences, she devoted her master’s thesis to the topic of queer people. She enjoyed times abroad, first during high school in the US, then during a ten-day exchange program in Iran and finally during her master’s in the UK. As the internship coordinator, Raisa supports students in finding a host organization and successfully completing their internship. Students who are not doing an internship but want to make a connection to organizations or research participants will also be supported by Raisa.

Marije Janssen
Marije studied at Utrecht University within the fields of gender studies and (new) media and digital culture and has been active within the field of gender and sexuality in the Netherlands. As an activist, she focuses on sex worker rights and has initiated different events around sexuality, ranging from underground multidisciplinary festivals to workshops around positive sexual education for professionals. She initiated the Get a Room! film series, a bimonthly film and discussion event focusing on all aspects of sexuality. After success in both Amsterdam and Utrecht, Get a Room! is now taking place in Rotterdam and Eindhoven. Within SIT, Marije is responsible for the sexuality studies module, focusing on sex positivism, sex work, sex education, and feminist pornography. Part of her module is an excursion to the Red Light District in Amsterdam and a visit to Rutgers/WPF in Utrecht, the oldest organization in the Netherlands working on the enhancement of sexual education.

Paul Mepschen, PhD
Paul is a social anthropologist working at the University of Amsterdam. His work focuses on populism and the politics of belonging in postcolonial and post-Fordist Europe. His PhD concentrated on the culturalization of citizenship and the construction of “autochthony” in the Netherlands, looking at the intersections of cultural, class, and urban politics and struggles over power and representation in a particular Amsterdam neighborhood. Another focus of Paul’s work has been the role of sexuality in the politics of culturalization and in Dutch racism and Islamophobia. He has analyzed the entanglements of “homonormative” representations of gay rights politics with Dutch neo-nationalist populism and anti-Islam discourses. As an activist, Paul has been involved in various progressive social movements, including labor and anti-racism activism. He co-founded the leftist think tank TENK. He lectures on gender, sexuality, and post-migration communities in a neo-liberal context for SIT.

Sudeep Dasgupta, PhD
Sudeep is associate professor in media studies at the University of Amsterdam and researcher at the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis. In his work he investigates the intersections of postcolonialism, gender, and sexuality. His most recent publication is What’s Queer about Europe? Productive Encounters and Re-enchanting Paradigms (2017). Sudeep lectures for SIT on gender/feminist theory, LGBT/queer theory, sexuality, and postcolonialism.

Dino Suhonic
Dino is the founder of Maruf, an organization that connects, supports, and strengthens queer Muslims and their allies by giving them a voice, visibility, and the power to create more social acceptance in their communities. Dino lecture’s on queer Muslims in the Netherlands and Europe.

Simone Zeefuik
Simone is an Amsterdam based writer, cultural programmer and organizer whose work centers around on representation, inclusivity, and social justice. She focuses on Africentred perspectives, decolonizing knowledge institutes, the illegalized members of the Afro-Dutch communities and (digital) archives. Her main interests are film, especially biopics, literature and theatre. Simone is working on finalizing the script of her play, Nour.