media release

Examining Singapore’s anti-gay paradox

April 08, 2014

Karen Ferguson, SFU Urban Studies, 778.782.7958,
Helen Hok-Sze Leung, SFU GSWS, 604.727.9344,
Kamilah Charters-Gabanek, SFU Vancouver, 778.782.5151,

On April 11, Audrey Yue of the University of Melbourne will examine the paradox of Singapore with Creative Singapore and the Illiberal Pragmatics of Sexuality, where the transition to a creative economy has meant an emergence of a vibrant gay culture, although homosexuality still remains a criminal offence.

Yue will present her case study of Fridae, an online gay Asian portal, to demonstrate how social enterprises can harness creativity through dual business and social empowerment models. These dual models, as Yue states, can allow for both individuals and communities to claim cultural rights in countries where sexual rights are non-existent.

Creative Singapore and the Illiberal Pragmatics of Sexuality will also cover how Singapore’s cultural liberalization can be sustained and continue to grow while located in a country that actively persecutes homosexuality. Funded by the SFU Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the lecture is co-presented by The Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies and the Graduate Program in Urban Studies.

Audrey Yue is Associate Professor of Cultural Studies at The University of Melbourne. Born in Singapore, her research covers the fields of cultural policy, migrant media and mobilities, and diasporic sexualities. She is currently the Chief Investigator of two Australian Research Council funded projects, and is completing a monograph on queer Asian migrations.

The lecture takes place in Harbour Centre (Segal Rooms 1420-1430) at SFU’s Vancouver campus on April 11, at 7 p.m. The event is free, but requires online registration.

Simon Fraser University is consistently ranked among Canada's top comprehensive universities and is one of the top 50 universities in the world under 50 years old. With campuses in Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey, B.C., SFU engages actively with the community in its research and teaching, delivers almost 150 programs to more than 30,000 students, and has more than 125,000 alumni in 130 countries.


Simon Fraser University: Engaging Students. Engaging Research. Engaging Communities.

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