Legalization of Homosexuality in India

Public Lecture by Indian Dancer, Choreographer, and Activist Navtej Johar on June 18 at 7:30 p.m. at the taz-Kantine

No 148/2019 from May 24, 2019

On June 18 at 7:30 p.m. a public lecture on the legalization of homosexuality in India will be held at the tagezeitung (taz) cafeteria in Berlin. The Indian dancer, choreographer, and activist Navtej Johar’s talk "Legalize My Sex" addresses the 2018 decision by the Supreme Court of India to decriminalize homosexuality. Navtej Johar is known as both an artist and a political activist for LGBTI* rights. The acronym LGBTI stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex. The asterisk represents other sexual and gender identities beyond those listed. Navtej Johar is the 2019 Valeska Gert Guest Professor for summer semester at Freie Universität Berlin. The Initiative Queer Nations together with the International Research Center "Interweaving Performance Cultures", the Institute for Theater Studies at Freie Universität Berlin, and the taz are organizing the queer lecture. The event will be in English. Admission is free. No advance registration is required.

In September 2018, the Supreme Court in India overruled a 157-year-old law that made homosexual acts illegal. Navtej Johar will talk about the efforts it took to repeal the law from his personal point of view.

As part of the Valeska Gert Guest Professorship at Freie Universität Berlin, Navtej Johar is teaching a seminar during the 2019 summer semester entitled "Crafting Poetic Ambiance: Methods of Designing and Willfully Inhabiting an Autonomous Imaginary-World."

His work as a dancer, choreographer, university teacher, yoga expert, and activist is based on principles from the classical Indian dance style of Bharatanatyam as well as from physical theater and somatics. Navtej Johar is a Sangeet Natak Akademi Award winner in contemporary choreography. His own dance brings together tradition and modernity and connects critical theory with social action. He has been a yoga instructor since 1985. His yoga practice combines asana, pranayama, meditation, visualization, and vedic chanting.

Time and Place

  • Tuesday, June 18, 7:30 p.m.
  • taz -Kantine, Friedrichstraße 21, 10969 Berlin

Dr. Stefan Donath, International Research Center "Interweaving Performance Cultures," Department of Philosophy and Humanities, Freie Universität Berlin, Tel.: +49 30 838 51925, Email: stefan.donath [at] fu-berlin (p) de