Jules Joanne Gleeson: Sadomasochism & Sex Reassignation

01oct19:0021:00Jules Joanne Gleeson: Sadomasochism & Sex ReassignationVirtual Event19:00 - 21:00 FacilitatorJules Joanne GleesonCategoryQEB2


(Friday) 19:00 - 21:00





Event Details


This talk will explore the second half of the previously published essay ‘How Do Gender Transitions Happen?’, exploring in some more depth the role played by S&M practices in the ‘community face’ of transition.

Clearly, sadomasochism has been one means used by trans people (among other queers) to ‘recontextualise’ and refashion otherwise seemingly immutable body parts. What can be taken from this longstanding approach to embodiment? Is this simply one face of S&M’s utility in exploring bodily limits? And how can we make sense of these scenes’ oscillation between wholehearted affirmation and subversive undermining of sex position?

I’ll draw from both existing academic work and more informal personal reflections from the 1980s and 90s. This approach aims to draw out both the distance and familiarity to current contexts and controversies.

This talk will outline both the particular overlap between S&M and transition, and tease towards obvious commonalities between deviant experiences (already latent in these accounts being largely extracted from collections that are predominantly cis gays and lesbians.) S&M will be found as prone to forming as disrupting otherwise sturdy-seeming foundations.


This session is part of the Queer Practices / Queer Embodiment remote transdisciplinary conference that aims to bring together artists, theorists, and practitioners. The conference continues our work of building a community that is focused on intentionally developing bodily practices. We want our space to be a place for political growth and experimentation using all the materials that bodywork, sex education, and cultural inquiry can provide.

We aim to take advantage of the opportunity for an online conference. We seek to engage a broader audience that may be familiar with sex-positive culture but is not necessarily attuned to a wider set of political concerns, or approaches to gender and sexuality that are more often encountered within academic, activist, and artistic spaces. We want to put together a conference that will be open to the public and focus on fostering challenging yet accessible conversation.

Queer Practices / Queer Embodiment is curated and organized by a collaborative team consisting of Andrea Rimon (an intimacy choreographer and movement artist) and Georg Barkas (a tying and sexuality educator) and Karada House in Berlin (a queer art/research space). It is sponsored by Karada House and Github for Good.

You can browse the full program and get access to this session/the conference here


Event Details

Date & Time:  October 1st, 2021, 7 pm – 9 pm CET (Berlin time)

Format: transdisciplinary conference


Language: English, automated closed captions provided

Recording: yes, will be available for 30 days to the participants of the conference


What else to know

After your successful ticket purchase, you will be sent an email with all the necessary data for this event.

This event is free. You can also choose a payment for your ticket which will be used by Karada House to finance similar events in the future.


Jules Joanne Gleeson

Jules Gleeson is a writer, editor, and stand-up comedian from London, based in Vienna. She is widely published and most recently co-edited the collection TRANSGENDER MARXISM (Pluto Press, 2021). For three years (until spring 2021) she ran the LesbiSM Vienna's monthly action evening, which she's currently in the process of reviving. Her historical research has focused on pre-modern gender relations (especially Byzantine eunuchs), and the philosophy of revolutionary thought.

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