Queering Arts and Literature in Nigeria
In the second episode of Queer Circles, Matthew Blaise talks with sociologist Adebayo Quadry-Adekanbi and writer and queer activist Ani Kayode Somtochukwu about the role of queerness in Nigerian arts and literature. They establish that queerness is not a concept imported from the West, but that queer (hi)stories and realities have always existed in Nigeria. Homophobia, on the other hand, is a product of the colonial past. In this decolonial perspective, queerness stands not only for sexual and gender identities of the LGBTQ+ community, but rather for a critical political stance towards normative structures. Queer African storytelling is thus also critical of a westernization of the international literary scene, which, with its identity-fixated, bourgeois, and neoliberal posits, obscures alternative narratives of precolonial, community-based, and resistant forms of queerness.