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Our Centre

Our Centre for Intimate and Sexual Citizenship (CISC) was established in October 2009 and continues the long tradition of research on sexualities, intimate life and equalities at Essex.

Our work

We support work on:

  • intimate life
  • family practices
  • relationships
  • patterns of family change
  • critical engagement with epistemology and methodology
  • sexuality and social theory.

We are committed to theory and empirical research within a global and interdisciplinary perspective.

News and events

Sexualities journal online

The current issue of the Sexualities journal is available to read online. This special edition focuses on queer migrations, asylum and displacement. Articles include topics such as border crossings and shifting sexualities among Mexican gay immigrant men by Hector Carrillo and Jorge Fontdevila and gender and cultural silences in the political asylum process, by Amy Shuman and Carol Bohmer.

About us

CISC provides an interdisciplinary space for cutting edge theory and research on contemporary intimate life, with particular reference to families, relationships and sexuality. The Centre’s focus explores the complex interplay between equality, intimate life and public identities, including:

  • reproductive rights
  • LGBT rights
  • blended families
  • the sexualisation of culture
  • gender
  • migration and belonging

The journal Sexualities: Studies in Culture and Society (published by Sage) is based at the Centre.

Intimate citizenship and sexuality studies

Current Essex scholars are specialists in the study of intimate life, exploring family practices, relationships and sexuality. The Centre’s members have a global perspective, doing research in societies in different regions of the globe. They are experts in drawing out the significance of private intimacies for public life.

The Centre also develops the Department of Sociology’s rich tradition of sexuality studies. Much pioneering research on sexualities and intimate life originated at Essex in the early 1970s. Leading scholars such as Ken Plummer, Mary McIntosh and Tony Coxon transformed the field of sexualities, producing classic texts such as Intimate Citizenship: Private Decisions and Public Dialogues (2003).

This tradition continues with the current members of the Centre, who do a range of work engaged with intimacy, equality and citizenship.


Our regular seminars are fortnightly every Wednesday, 1-2pm in room 6.345 and provide a forum for presentation and discussion of new research.


Seminar archive

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Keep up-to-date with what's going on in the Centre by signing up to our mailing list (.docx).

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