Wednesday, January 17, 4:30-6:00pm. Haskell 101

Matthew Hiller (SSA): “OCD – Self and Other”

with opening comments by Paula Martin (CHD)

This paper examines the emergence and discourse of online forums focused on sexuality-related  themes in OCD. The first section gives a history of these forums and examines how participants narratively differentiate OCD from “homosexuality” and “pedophilia.”  The second section explores interrelations between forum discourse and cultural understandings of sexuality and self-knowledge. In the last section, I draw on queer and disability theory to assess how OCD narratives both advance and contest dominant social logics. My contention is that both forum and psychiatric narratives voice cultural beliefs and anxieties concerning the “truth” of sexuality (Foucault 1990; Gross 2011), clinical typologies, and the nature of sexual threats. However, OCD forums also create a discursive space in which these conceptions are challenged and recast.

To receive the paper, or if you have any questions or require assistance to attend, email the workshop coordinator: Kieran Kelley (

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