Research at the Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies

The Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies currently has one structural focal point and three project-related thematic clusters.

ReConstructing Sex

(Structural research focal point)
The research focal point ReConstructing Sex, jointly developed by the Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies, is devoted to the consideration of the biological and psychological dimensions of gender. On the one hand, the psychological significance of physical gender differences is examined. On the other hand, the dialogue between gender studies and the natural sciences, which was often neglected as a result of feminist criticism of science, will be taken up again in order to explore ways in which the natural sciences can contribute to clarifying the multidimensionality of gender. The aim is to understand better how the respective perspectives on sex and gender can be taken into account in our different fields of specialization.
For the academic activities within the framework of this research focal point, see the complete list of scientific events at the Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies.

Gender, Religion and Politics

(Project-related thematic cluster)
Generalizing assumptions about the dynamics and consequences of modernization processes have proved to be in need of revision, especially with regard to religion and gender. On the one hand, in a historical longitudinal perspective, the entanglement of processes of secularization and sacralization can be observed. On the other hand, gender inequality is constantly reconfigured in secular as well as religious contexts. The cluster bundles research on colonial and postcolonial constellations of gender, religion and politics from a historically and regionally comparative perspective.
For the academic activities within the framework of this thematic cluster, see the complete list of scientific events at the Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies.

Knowledge Scapes

(Project-related thematic cluster)
The thematic cluster "Knowledge Scapes" brings together research interests dealing with questions of the history of science and knowledge systems in the MENA region. It deals both with historical forms of exchange and acquisition of new forms of knowledge and with local and regional knowledge cultures in the context of globalized power asymmetries.
For the academic activities within the framework of this thematic cluster see the complete list of scientific events at the Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies.

Norms and Orders

(Project-related thematic cluster)

(Gender) norms and (gender) orders play a crucial role in the development of historically differentiated systems of gender relations. On the one hand, they provide the constitutive rules that enable, stabilize and reproduce social action, symbolic representations and subject formations. On the other hand, normative conceptions of law and justice, equality, freedom, solidarity and democracy form the horizon for emancipatory gender politics in the past and present and unfold a transformative and critical impact in this function.
In the project-related thematic cluster "Norms and Orders", the connection between gender and normative orders is reflected both from a historical-analytical and a normative-critical perspective with a view to theory formation and political structures, especially in Switzerland and the MENA region.
For the academic activities within the framework of this thematic cluster, see the complete list of scientific events at the Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies.

Completed Projects

Gender - Culture - Difference (2010 - 2017)
Since colonial times, gender and sexuality have played an important role in hegemonic self-constructions and forms of othering. In an increasingly globalized world, they are the subject of political interventions and culturalizing representations. The thematic cluster "Gender and Constructions of Cultural Difference" pools interdisciplinary projects and academic activities on gender issues from a transcultural historical perspective. It reflects the specific profile of Gender Studies at the UZH, with its focus on the humanities and cultural studies on the one hand, and the non-European focus on the other.
For the academic activities within the framework of this research focus see the complete list of scientific events organized at the Chair of Gender Studies and Islamic Studies.