Vanessa Fabbre | Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis
Vanessa Fabbre
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Vanessa Fabbre

Vanessa Fabbre

Associate Professor
PhD, University of Chicago
  • Areas of Focus:

  • LGBTQ aging
  • Social work practice
  • Interpretive methodology
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Contact Information
Vanessa Fabbre

Vanessa Fabbre's research agenda is driven by several core questions: What are the conditions under which queer and trans people experience wellness in later life? And what does it mean to age well in the context of heteronormativity, transphobia, and other oppressive social forces? Further, what does queer and trans liberation mean in an increasingly aging global society?

Fabbre's dissertation research explored gender transitions in later life, focusing specifically on experiences of queer time, failure, and agency in the life course. In collaboration with photographer Jess T. Dugan, Fabbre created To Survive on This Shore: Photographs and Interviews with Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Older Adults ( which culminated in a book and traveling museum exhibition.

Her current empirical project pursues these core research questions through interpretive analyses of in-depth biographical interviews with queer, trans, and gender expansive older adults. Fabbre also seeks to promote critical and anti-oppressive perspectives on social work practice and rigorous interpretive methodology in the social sciences in her teaching and research.

Fabbre is affiliate faculty in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and a faculty scholar in the Institute of Public Health at Washington University in St. Louis. At the Brown School, Fabbre teaches the following courses: Social Justice and Human Diversity; Direct Social Work Practice with Older Adults; Social, Economic, and Political Environment; and Qualitative Research Methods.

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