Sexual citizenship is often used to enforce gender and sexual norms, to help construct the “Other,” and as a tool for national security. Because of the invisibility and invalidation of asexuality in the U.S., there is a lack of research on sexual citizenship discourses and a need for more research that utilizes intersectional feminism in asexuality studies. This master’s thesis uses an intersectional, transnational feminist, and queer lens to analyze how people who identify on the asexuality spectrum currently living in the U.S. are impacted by the concept of sexual citizenship. This research uses a qualitative survey, which 124 people, who were at least 18 years of age, completed. I argue that their experiences reveal the various ways they are made to feel invisible, alienated, and erased because of acephobia, amatonormativity, compulsory sexuality, and other systems of oppression. The findings consist of six main themes: 1) Amatonormativity, 2) Allonormative Medicine and Negative Experiences with Medical Practitioners, 3) Acephobia, 4) Exclusion from the Queer Community, 5) the Avoidance of “Coming Out” as Strategy, and 6) the Assemblance of the Ace Community. These findings demonstrate that many of them feel broken and outcasted from society unless they conform to systems like amatonormativity and allonormativity. While their aceness and other identities create unique forms of oppression that often deem them “noncitizens,” they are not victims who lack agency. Many of them also resist these systems of oppression through validation and empowerment from the ace community. This research aims to visibilize asexuality, highlight the voices and experiences of marginalized aces, and provide a space for aces to claim epistemic authority of their experiences. Thus, this thesis may also help others better understand some aces’ experiences and how to fight for social justice in a way that includes asexuality.
Date of Degree
Master of Arts (MA)
Program of Study
Gender and Women's Studies
Humanities and Social Sciences
Wenzel, M. (2023). "It feels like I don't exist": An intersectional feminist analysis of the Ace Citizen [Master’s thesis, Minnesota State University, Mankato]. Cornerstone: A Collection of Scholarly and Creative Works for Minnesota State University, Mankato. https://cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/etds/1318/
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