Phobia: Politics of Hate and Fear in and towards LGBTIAQ+ Collectives

LGBTIAQ+ Programme 2023

June - December 2023 - Check programme
Azucena Vieites, Juguemos a prisioneras, 1993-1996. Museo Reina Sofia
Azucena Vieites, Juguemos a prisioneras, 1993-1996. Museo Reina Sofia
Jesús Carrillo
Organised by
Museo Reina Sofía

This fresh edition of the LGBTIAQ+ programme looks to explore the possibility of imaginatively and politically turning around the logics of hate and fear that run through us, socially raising questions around who personifies a non-normative sex-gender or body position. Thus, the programme endeavours to steer clear at once of victimisation which non-critically takes on a “phobic” logic determining it and any attempt at naïve “solutionism” ignoring the deep-seated roots of violence.

The activities here examine different cases of phobic violence, primarily the struggles that are structured despite and opposite them. They are carried out from contemporary debate, assembling agents which lead these debates in the present: from archive, ranging across and reactivating traces and documents with a decades-long scream for freedom in contexts of repression and extreme persecution; from the performance of the body, a living archive of these forms of violence and resistance; and from the collective exploration of new artistic and political imaginaries by convening a study group.

The suffix -phobia pervades many of the terms that designate modes of social discrimination in non-normative sex-gender bodies and identities: lesbophobia, transphobia, homophobia, sissyphobia, fatphobia, and so on, terms that also align with others, such as xenophobia or aporophobia, and share the same semantic structure.

Although the literal meaning of phobia is “fear”, its meaning has shifted to become associated with a compulsive and irrational aversion to the “other”, whereby we perceive a threat to our integrity as individuals and as a community. Opposite that which we have a phobia towards we simultaneously flee and respond, deploying mechanisms of expulsion and destruction.

It has been forever present in the beginnings of every community, yet a culture of phobia is gaining ground in the organisation of social space for reasons stemming from the biopolitical and necropolitical matrix of contemporary populations.

Phobia feeds into discourse, shapes imaginaries and governs attitudes and behaviours which spread like wildfire through the media and on social media. Members of LGBTIAQ+ collectives are not averse to such phobias and often reproduce them with such hostility that it exposes an inner fear and hatred towards themselves.


Theodore de Bry, Los perros de Vasco Núñez de Balboa (1475-1571) atacando a los indios (The Dogs of Vasco Núñez de Balboa (1475–1571) Attacking the Indians), n.d., Archivo Arkhé

Conversation: free, until full capacity is reached, with prior ticket collection at the Museo’s Ticket Offices or on the Museo Reina Sofía website from 10am on the last working day before the activity. A maximum of 2 per person

Visit to Archivo Arkhé: free, until full capacity is reached, with prior registration via email by writing to until 26 June, indicating personal details (name and surname[s])