Beyond Binary Beyond Binary

Dr Francisco Costa


As a queer scholar, my work has for long focused on how cultural discourses shape and reflect our lives, how they participate in civic conversations, and how they serve as a vehicle for social change. In 2016, I had the opportunity to contribute to a BBC radio programme, which looked at these questions by investigating communities around the globe where the dichotomous structures and binaries male/female, masculine/feminine, heterosexual/homosexual, straight/gay are being challenged.  

Research Overview

Beyond Binary consists on a one-hour documentary produced for BBC World Service Identity season. The programme investigates communities around the world where people challenge narrow perceptions and expectations of gender, and where diverse gender expressions are visible and valued.

The programme, developed by journalist Linda Pressly, explores how non-normative identities challenge the law, society and conventional concepts about gender itself by hearing the stories from non-binary activists who are part of this contemporary movement and from those simply trying to live free from the constraints of the expectations of gender.  

What Next

The themes explored in the programme are part of my past and current research, which will continue to look at the place, role, use, and power of queer expressions and dynamics and investigate new analytical frameworks for talking about LGBTQ culture and history that expand and challenge current models of identity and community formation.

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