Going Beyond Binaries in research about SGBV Against Men –

with Heleen Touquet & Philipp Schulz


This conversation draws upon two recently published articles written by Heleen Touquet and Philipp Schulz: “Navigating vulnerabilities and masculinities: How gendered contexts shape the agency of male sexual violence survivors”, Security Dialogue and “Queering explanatory frameworks for wartime sexual violence against men” in International Affairs.

In today’s episode, you’ll be hearing about:

  • the necessity to break the binaries and keep in mind the messiness of the lived experiences;
  • survivors’ agency is shaped and conditioned by different opportunity structures;
  • binary strategy/opportunism categorizations imply broader unintended political consequences & further marginalize those acts of sexual violence that fall outside the dominant scripts;
  • the importance of working in collaboration and in a trauma-informed way;
  • queering knowledge production about conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence – how do we read testimonies and how does our own positionality in terms of gender and sexuality influence how we see the world and interpret testimonies;
  • and – as usual – some good reading suggestions.


Dr. Philipp Schulz is a Post-Doctoral Researcher at the Institute for Intercultural and International Studies (InIIS) at the University of Bremen. His research focuses on the gender dynamics and dimensions of armed conflicts, political violence, and (in)security, with a particular emphasis on masculinities. Philipp has conducted research with male survivors of wartime sexual violence in Northern Uganda. His open-access book ‘Male Survivors of Wartime Sexual Violence: Perspectives from Northern Uganda’ is coming out with University of California Press in November 2020.’    

Tweets: @philipp_schulz1


 Dr. Heleen Touquet is the holder of the Velge Chair in European Values at the University of Antwerp and a researcher at the University of Leuven (KUL), where she leads a project on masculinities, vulnerabilities and male victims of conflict-related sexual violence in Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina. She has worked on post-ethnic mobilization in Bosnia-Herzegovina and the framing of reconciliation in the former Yugoslavia. Together with Koen Slootmaeckers and Peter Vermeersch she edited a volume on the Europeanisation of LGBT rights in the Western Balkans. She currently conducts a research project on conflict-related sexual violence against men in Bosnia and Croatia and has also written about male survivors from Sri Lanka for the International Truth and Justice Project. Besides conflict-related sexual violence, her current research interests consist of the conflict between the EU’s support for post-conflict transitional justice and its insistence on moral remembrance, as well as masculinities, vulnerability, and violent conflict. Heleen has published in Security Dialogue, East European Politics and Societies, Europe-Asa studies, and other journals. More of her work on SGBV against men and boys can be found here and here.  Heleen tweets @HeleenTouquet

Podcast host: Sladjana Lazic

Text and edits: Sladjana Lazic


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