Faculty of Political Science (คณะรัฐศาสตร์)
Master of Arts
International Development Studies
The Philippine migration scholarship heavily focuses on heteronormative issues that depict the migrant workers as heterosexuals. Due to this trend, there is a scarcity of studies on overseas Filipino workers who identify as part of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ+) Community. Hence, this qualitative research focuses on eleven documented Filipino workers in Thailand who are males assigned at birth and identify as gay homosexuals. Individual informal interviews were employed to investigate how they practice their non-normative gender and sexuality, given their multiple yet intersectional social identities in a country with vibrant queer cultures. It also probes the relationship between the queer Filipino migrant laborers and the Thai capital Bangkok’s queer spaces and how they influence one another. By drawing my analyses on queer theory to simultaneously engage the three disciplines of sexuality, spaces, and migration, the research exposes the critical role of queer spaces in the formation and confirmation of the migrants’ gender and sexual identities through their experience in finding acceptance and belongingness as well as satisfying their romantic and sexual pursuits in both physical and online gay-oriented spaces. The investigation led to a realization that their presence in these spaces became a contributing factor in the intensification of existing issues on the function and significance of gay spaces, such as its heterosexualization and reinforced gay audience segmentation while homonormalization is happening in heterosexual spaces, which may all have a serious impact on the future of queer cultures that Thailand had cultivated for more than half a century. This observation banks on the idea that although space is helpful in an individual’s identity formation, an individual is basically the creator of space because it is social. Queering the migrant experience presents the importance of gender and sexuality as identities in the migration process as the performance of these identities by migrant laborers allows them to be molded by the spaces they consume and, on the one hand, be active stakeholders that influence and manufacture the meanings of these spaces. Hence, being gay, homosexual, and migrant workers are fundamental roles in the flourishment of sexual identities, practices, and communities.
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Madanguit, Hans Kevin, "Queering The Migrant Experience: Gay Filipino Workers’ Performance of Gender and Sexual Identities in Bangkok" (2021). Chulalongkorn University Theses and Dissertations (Chula ETD). 4755.