References

Listed here are various websites and links to published material that do not appear explicitly in the guide, but which the author utilized in compiling information, alongside the anecdotes and information provided by student contributors.

  • http://www.ilga.org/ – Website of International Lesbian and Gay Association. Lists current news in legislation and LGBT movements worldwide.
  • IGLA 2006 World LGBT Legal Survey – A publication that lists globally which country maintain laws protecting and endorsing the rights of LGBT citizens.
  • http://www.iglhrc.org/site/iglhrc/ – Website of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission. Provides information on thriving LGBT issues as well as a list of international initiatives to spread LGBT education and acceptance.
  • http://www.ilga-europe.org/europe/guide/ – A comprehensive evaluation by the European chapter of ILGA that looks at the current rights and issues of the LGBT community.
  • http://www.globalgayz.com/index.html/ – Journal website documenting the travels of LGBT persons throughout countries and cities all over the world. Also, this website maintains an article website for
  • http://www.advocate.com/ – Website for the established LGBT news site, The Advocate. Offers wide array of articles and studies that have looked into the international developments of LGBT legislation, communities, and activism.
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Tips for Using This Guide

This guide is to help you get adjusted to the new community in which you will be studying for either a semester or a full year. The information is meant to not only give you a general overview of the treatment and public opinion of the LGBT community and queer issues, but also provide useful resources and tips for getting involved within the community.

Each section is devoted to one of the NYU Study Abroad sites, listing information on: Safety and Legislation, Cultural Differences, Getting Involved/Informed, Hotspots, and a brief section with Travel ideas. Most of these pages provide anecdotes, tips, and other info from LGBT returnee students that wish to share their experiences with you. Addresses and links to most listings are provided in the guide as well as links to prominent articles that discuss many of the discussed issues in the guide in greater detail. Check out the references and explore some international organizations fighting for the equality of LGBT individuals.

The NYU LGBT Study Abroad Guide is ever-expanding and changing, influenced by many different factors: the latest political development in LGBT issues, a new contribution from a student, or even something as simple as a club closing down. With that said, as the reader if you find anything that you would like to add or think should be changed, then send us an e-mail. Making this guide as informative and engaging as possible requires a collaborative effort from as many open members of the international LGBT community as possible!

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LGBT Cultural Overview

Most major world cities are open-minded and respond positively to people of different races, religions, sexual orientations, and gender identities; however please keep in mind that there are some differences in perspective and levels of acceptance. Each abroad site has its own center of LGBT culture, like the Soho area of London, Chueca in Madrid, or Le Marais in Paris. These areas contain LGBT organizations, nightclubs, cafes, and other institutions. Other sites such as Accra, Ghana and Shanghai, China are struggling to achieve equal rights and protection for LGBT citizens. Still, both possess cultural centers and organizations aimed at supporting gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals. One thing to keep in mind is that queer culture in some of these international cities is not as visible as it is in places like New York or San Francisco. In cities such as Prague, for example, it is a more of an underground culture that shines within the clubs as opposed to outside in the streets. (In fact many of the LGBT bars and clubs are, quite literally, underground!). All of these places while, sharing qualities of the NYC queer community, offer their own cultural interpretation.

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Introduction

For many who go abroad, it takes time to become comfortable and adapt to a new culture and setting. It often can be even more of a challenge for those who are members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) communities. As a student living abroad, it is important that we consider the implications of being identified as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender and how being “out” may have an impact on our interactions and experiences. This guide is intended to help make that adjustment and familiarize you with some of the challenges that can occur by studying abroad as an LGBT student.

While it is true that certain sites may be more tolerant than others, each location offers its own distinct culture and history that requires the student to have patience and respect as he/she adjusts. This guide has been created to demonstrate the ever-growing international LGBT community through the examples of the NYU Study Abroad sites, and also to grant you the resources to connect to both prior to and during your semester abroad. The information compiled here is the amalgamation of both documented fact and the anecdotes of students, myself included, whose experiences as LGBT students were both challenging and fulfilling. With some reflection, street smarts, and a sense of adventure, studying in a foreign country will be an incredibly rewarding and memorable experience!

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