In this dissertation, Gianmaria Colpani MA (Gender Studies) explores contemporary transformations of both progressive sexual politics and queer theory from a politico-philosophical perspective. On the one hand, Colpani analyzes how LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer) politics have been recently articulated to the politico-economic project of neoliberalism and to new forms of racism, nationalism, and imperialism. Thus, the dissertation is situated within contemporary queer debates on “homonormativity” (Duggan 2003), “homonationalism” (Puar 2007), and “sexual imperialism” (Massad 2007). On the other hand, his focus is on how queer theory has responded to these political transformations.
Colpani reads both processes—the transformations of contemporary sexual politics and the transformations of the queer theoretical field—through the theory of hegemony that Stuart Hall appropriated from Italian communist thinker Antonio Gramsci and reactivated in Britain in the 1980s, in the context of Thatcherism (see Hall 1986; 1988). The central goal of the dissertation is to explore the ways in which the conceptual apparatus developed by Hall in that context can help us better understand today both the transformations of LGBTQ politics and the transformations of the queer theoretical field.