Toronto Metropolitan University
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Proving it: experiences of sexual minorities in the Canadian refugee determination system

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posted on 2021-05-23, 17:15 authored by Casey Anderson
This paper explores refugee claimant’s experiences negotiating the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). Focusing on claims based on sexual orientation and gender identity, this paper investigates how claimants are made to ‘prove’ their sexual orientation and gender identity. The IRB and its decision makers require that claimants prove their identity as a refugee as well as a member of a sexual minority. Through an analysis of the existing literature and by integrating queer and feminist theoretical concepts on gender, sex, performativity and representation, it is apparent that the Canadian IRB functions as a heteronormative system in which the understanding of sexual orientation and gender identities are essentialized.



  • Master of Arts


  • Immigration and Settlement Studies

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • MRP