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Journal article

Nairobi is a Shot of Whisky: Queer (Ob)Scenes in the City


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Taylor and Francis
Africa | Eastern Africa

Kenya has become a site of, and frame for, the contradictions of queer livability on one hand and queer visibility on the other. Despite virulent attacks by the political and religious section of the country against queer sexual expression, there is a visible queer existence that is predicated on embodied lived experiences and spatial subjectivity. In this paper, I investigate selected city-spaces in Nairobi - nightclub, tavern and cruising spot - to explore the ways that these locations enable their users to animate the space, allowing their mobility and therefore enabling their existence within the contradiction. I speculate on how the users imagine themselves within these spaces. Secondly, I ask what significations are accrued to the user's subjectivities in relation to, and as a result of these spaces. I contend that the structure of these spaces allows for queer, queering and queered flows that make it possible for queer users to subvert the spaces and to make it possible to...


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