Gender, democracy and neoconservative anti-gender movement

kolazResearch (Kuhar, 2017; Kuhar and Pajnik, 2020) shows that the supposed threat of “gender”, mobilized as an empty signifier by anti-gender movements, translates into short messages that instill fear, create moral panic and a sense of threat, at the same time, they reproduce simplistic essentialist notions of what is normal and natural. The project tests this thesis using the concepts of “politics of fear” (Wodak, 2015) and “affective governmentality” (Sauer and Penz, 2017). The aim of the research is also to supplement existing studies with a legal and sociological analysis of the (legal) practices of movement actors, such as citizen initiatives, amicus briefs and other forms of strategic litigation. An intersectional legal and sociological analysis is necessary because “strategic litigation” and the strategic use of the concept of “human rights” in national and transnational struggles against “gender theory” is one of the key strategies of this movement.

Project group:
Peace Institute: Mojca Pajnik (leader at PI), Leja Markelj
Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana: Roman Kuhar (leader), Rok Smrdelj
Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ljubljana: Alenka Švab, Barbara Rajgelj

Grant number: J5-50158.


Collage: Kiara Drolc, 2024


  • Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana
  • Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ljubljana


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