Fabian Holle, PhD-candidate within our project, has won the 2020 ARC-GS Master Thesis Prize for the research they did for the thesis 'Queer creations between a rock and a hard place. Art practicing LGBTQ+ forced migrants unsettling Dutch hegemony'. Below, you can read the jury report and watch the video in which Fabian describes in more detail their research project.
“Queer creations between a rock and a hard place. Art practicing LGBTQ+ forced migrants unsettling Dutch hegemony” explores the hegemonic challenges faced by LGBTQ+ forced migrants in the Netherlands and asks how their art practices play a role in unsettling these dominant forces. The Jury was convinced that the topic remains a crucial one in the Netherlands and that the author’s focus on art practices, novel both empirically and theoretically, opened new ground in the field. Holle’s thesis turns away from the worn trope of forced migrant as victim, placing instead an emphasis on the way in which the art practicing LGBTQ+ forced migrants actively challenge assumptions and blind spots about migrants like themselves. Holle brings to this debate not just a view of migrants as agentive but also a contextualized and layered conceptualization of hegemony. The Jury was particularly impressed with the focus on creative productions as a space for agentive action. The Jury applauds the horizontal approach Holle took in their research, seeing the production of knowledge as collaboration and understanding the art practicing LGBTQ+ forced migrants as participants in this co-production of knowledge. The Jury considers this a well-researched, carefully written, nuanced thesis.