Hypersexuality and Headscarves

Hypersexuality and Headscarves

Race, Sex, and Citizenship in the New Germany
Damani J. Partridge
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 02/17/2012
Format: Paperback 9 b&w illus.
ISBN: 978-0-253-22369-2
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In this compelling study, Damani J. Partridge explores citizenship and exclusion in Germany since the fall of the Berlin Wall. That event seemed to usher in a new era of universal freedom, but post-reunification transformations of German society have in fact produced noncitizens: non-white and "foreign" Germans who are simultaneously portrayed as part of the nation and excluded from full citizenship. Partridge considers the situation of Vietnamese guest workers "left behind" in the former East Germany; images of hypersexualized black bodies reproduced in popular culture and intimate relationships; and debates about the use of the headscarf by Muslim students and teachers. In these and other cases, which regularly provoke violence against those perceived to be different, he shows that German national and European projects are complicit in the production of distinctly European noncitizens.

Author Bio

Damani J. Partridge is Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology and in the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies at the University of Michigan.


“This compelling study explores citizenship and exclusion in Germany since the fall of the Berlin Wall. Behind a nation reunited after decades of separation lie the untold stories of its noncitizens struggling for inclusion.”

“Partridge shows how being included in the body politic can be a form of social control and exclusion. . . . Provides a case study for how one can look at identity politics in connection with the debates about human or national rights for citizens.”
 — Sander L. Gilman, Emory University

“Opens up new horizons in conceptualizing the place of biologically non-German bodies in contemporary Germany.”
 — Esra Özyürek, University of California, San Diego

“[T]his book is an important addition to scholarship on citizenship and minority inclusion/exclusion in Europe, adding a much-needed perspective on Germany to a field dominated by work on Britain and France. It is highly readable: Partridge has an easy, engaging style that makes the book eminently suitable for undergraduates, in addition to graduate students and specialists.”
 — German Studies Review

“Hypersexuality and Headscarves is a critical analysis of the dynamics of race and citizenship in Germany after the fall of the Berlin Wall. With this highly original investigation, Partridge offers an important contribution to the study of race in Germany.”
 — Reviews & Critical Commentary

“[This] book's impressive ethnographic breadth thus serves to convey just how varied, pervasive, and entrenched the mechanisms of exclusion are in Germany. . . Taken as a whole, Partridge's portrait of exclusion in Germany is an illuminating and damning one. August 2013”

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Becoming Noncitizens
1. Ethno-patriarchal Returns: The Fall of the Wall, Closed Factories, and Leftover Bodies
2. Travel as an Analytic of Exclusion: The Politics of Mobility after the Wall
3. We Were Dancing in the Club, Not on the Berlin Wall: Black Bodies, Street Bureaucrats, and Hypersexual Returns
4. The Progeny of Guest Workers as Leftover Bodies: Post-Wall West German Schools and the Administration of Failure
5. Why Can't You Just Remove Your Headscarf So We Can See You? Reappropriating "Foreign" Bodies in the New Germany
Conclusion: Intervening at the Sites of Exclusionary Production
Epilogue: Triangulated (Non)Citizenship: Memories and Futures of Racialized Production

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