Across the globe, “morality” issues such as homosexuality and abortion have become high stake politics, constituting rallying points for political mobilization and contestation in the political braches as well as in the courts. Abortion related questions play a central political role in in Latin America, issues of same sex relations do the same on the African continent. In the USA both issues have been highly politicized for decades, and in several European countries, they are recurring in the political debate, recently quite dramatically in Poland, Why is this so? Some see this mainly in religious terms, and particularly as a result of American evangelical churches gaining increased global influence. Others point to the strategic value, the political currency of these highly morally charged issues. Political leaders – from Russia’s President Putin, Uganda’s President Museveni and Nicaraguan president Daniel Ortega, to Donald Trump – have found homophobia and resistance to ‘gender ideology’ and reproductive rights highly effective tools for creating alliances, diverting attention and mobilizing political support. This roundtable will analyze the political economy of sexuality and abortion around the globe.
Moderator: Pierre de Vos (University of Cape Town Law School, South Africa)
Participants include: Getnet Tadele (Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia), Leo Arriola (UC Berkeley), Alan Msosa (University of Essex), Marta Machado (FGV São Paulo), Frans Viljoen (Univeristy of Pretoria) + tbc*