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Women RisingIn and Beyond the Arab Spring$
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Rita Stephan and Mounira M. Charrad

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781479846641

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479846641.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 17 September 2021

Sensing Queer Activism in Beirut

Sensing Queer Activism in Beirut

(p.173) 19 Sensing Queer Activism in Beirut
Women Rising

Nisrine Chaer

NYU Press

From 2007 to 2014, Meem was an organized group of more than four hundred lesbian, bisexual, queer, trans* women and trans* people in Lebanon. Based on an ethnography of/with the Meem community, this article explores Meem’s activism as an embodiment of a MENA-situated and nonfixed queerness that disrupts the model of an LGBT rights activism framed through the binary of Western “Gay International” polarized against an authentic Arab identity. In this chapter, Nisrine Chaer examines protest soundscapes, or the auditory sensations in embodied encounters within the spaces of the protests, that have emerged in the wake of the garbage crisis in Lebanon and in a feminist march, “Take Back the Night.” She argues that by looking at the sensual dimensions of activism in space, the embodied practices of protesting, we expand our understanding of politics beyond the discursive realm, and hence capture the complex and intersectional nature of Meem’s political practice that resists both imperialist and local oppressions.

Keywords:   Lebanon, Gay International, Meem, garbage crisis, protest soundscapes, auditory sensations, Take Back the Night

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