Center for Global Politics guest researcher Dr Richard Mole presented some of his findings on the Russian LGBT diaspora in Berlin
News from Jul 27, 2016
Since the beginning of this month, the Center for Global Politics (CGP) has been playing host to a new guest researcher – Dr Richard Mole. Dr Mole is a Senior Lecturer in Political Sociology from the School of Slavonic and East European Studies at University College London. While at the CGP he has been researching the views and backgrounds of different LGBT diaspora groups in Berlin, focusing on those hailing from Russia, Poland and Brazil.
In a presentation today to the CGP team, Dr. Mole presented the findings of his research on the Russian LGBT diaspora. Through this research, which involved a large amount of interviews and questionnaires, he has made a number of interesting observations about this rather unique group. Firstly, he found that Berlin was chosen as a potential destination country not just because of its gay-friendly reputation, but also socio-economic reasons. Secondly, he discovered that the vast majority of those who had immigrated to Germany were from the upper socio-economic classes in Russia and thus perhaps were not fully representative of the wider LGBT community in the country.
Another somewhat paradoxical discovery Dr. Mole made through his research interviews was that many gay Russians living in Berlin, still had considerable nostalgia for their home country, despite its discriminatory culture. This nostalgia, combined with conservative pre-existing diaspora communities, had resulted in them being forced to create their own LGBT-friendly diaspora group which they called 'Quarteera'.