front cover of Gay Fatherhood
Gay Fatherhood
Narratives of Family and Citizenship in America
Ellen Lewin
University of Chicago Press, 2009

Men are often thought to have less interest in parenting than women, and gay men are generally assumed to prefer pleasure over responsibility. The toxic combination of these two stereotypical views has led to a lack of serious attention being paid to the experiences of gay fathers. But the truth is that more and more gay men are setting out to become parents and succeeding—and Gay Fatherhood aims to tell their stories.

Ellen Lewin takes as her focus people who undertake the difficult process of becoming fathers as gay men, rather than having become fathers while married to women. These men face unique challenges in their quest for fatherhood, negotiating specific bureaucratic and financial conditions as they pursue adoption or surrogacy and juggling questions about their future child’s race, age, sex, and health. Gay Fatherhood chronicles the lives of these men, exploring how they cope with political attacks from both the "family values" right and the "radical queer" left—while also shedding light on the evolving meanings of family in twenty-first-century America.


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Gender Politics
Citizenship, Activism and Sexual Diversity
Surya Monro
Pluto Press, 2005

front cover of The Golden Passport
The Golden Passport
Global Mobility for Millionaires
Kristin Surak
Harvard University Press, 2023

"[A] fascinating study of how people―and their capital―seek to move around a world that is at once hugely interconnected and driven by inequities…definitive, detailed, and unusually nuanced.”
―Atossa Araxia Abrahamian, Foreign Affairs

The first comprehensive on-the-ground investigation of the global market for citizenship, examining the wealthy elites who buy passports, the states and brokers who sell them, and the normalization of a once shadowy practice.

Our lives are in countless ways defined by our citizenship. The country we belong to affects our rights, our travel possibilities, and ultimately our chances in life. Obtaining a new citizenship is rarely easy. But for those with the means—billionaires like Peter Thiel and Jho Low, but also countless unknown multimillionaires—it’s just a question of price.

More than a dozen countries, many of them small islands in the Mediterranean, Caribbean, and South Pacific, sell citizenship to 50,000 people annually. Through six years of fieldwork on four continents, Kristin Surak discovered how the initially dubious sale of passports has transformed into a full-blown citizenship industry that thrives on global inequalities. Some “investor citizens” hope to parlay their new passport into visa-free travel—or use it as a stepping stone to residence in countries like the United States. Other buyers take out a new citizenship as an insurance policy or to escape state control at home. Almost none, though, intend to move to their selected country and live among their new compatriots, whose relationship with these global elites is complex.

A groundbreaking study of a contentious practice that has become popular among the nouveaux riches, The Golden Passport takes readers from the details of the application process to the geopolitical hydraulics of the citizenship industry. It’s a business that thrives on uncertainty and imbalances of power between big, globalized economies and tiny states desperate for investment. In between are the fascinating stories of buyers, brokers, and sellers, all ready to profit from the citizenship trade.


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