(LogOut/ Hailed by the New York Times as "one of the most influential texts in gender studies, men's studies and gay studies," this book uncovers the homosocial desire between men, from Restoration comedies to Tennyson's Princess. Sedgwick's optimism was far from nave; the same introduction disclosed her diagnosis of breast cancer, which. Those identified as homosexual in medical discourse appropriated the discourse to revise what the category might mean, identify one another, build a community, and make political demands. Rubin uses the phrase sex-gender system to describe the process by which social relations produce women as oppressed beings. The editors are scholars and authors of Jewish studies, queer theory, and religious studies (New York: Columbia University Press, 2003). [17] Fausto-Sterling has since conceded Kesslers point. As a result, meanings and values change across space and time. Queer Theory followed the emergence and popularity of Gay and Lesbian (now, LGBT or Queer) Studies in the academy. In Chapter 5, Sedgwick orients the reader toward the other side of the spectrum and focuses her reading of Prousts work on the two queer characters in the novel In Search of Lost Time. Butler names institutional powers, like psychologists and psychiatrists, and informal practices, like bullying, that try to keep us in our place. This can be seen in the early homophile movement, which refers to late nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century homosexual rights activism that emerged in tandem and entwined with sexology and anti-sodomy laws. The climax of this story comes after Billy accuses Claggart of nefarious activity, and Vere intervenes by arbitrating the situation from within the privacy of the captains quarters. On Writing Since Queer Theory, the reader is confronted, not only with a summary of their project, but also with a rather profound elucidation of the competing, disparate voices that claim to speak for and about the movement. The types of advocacy discussed in this article have, I contend, marginalized critical queerness in favour of a normative, discursively limited framework of 'gay' or 'LGBT' rights. What are the key events that Ford identifies as defining the broad outlines of the history of the word. Summary. De Lauretis suggested gay and lesbian sexualities should be studied, not as deviations of heterosexuality, but on their own terms. Queer Theory Revisited, by Michael Hames-Garca. The play of her mind as it goes from Henry James to John Waters and Divine, from AIDS to Jane Austen and women's anal eroticism, is dazzling. essentialist. Such a story is relevant for Sedgwicks investigations precisely because the stereotype of opacity and secrecy in homosexual identity and desire is heighted by Claggarts status as a policeman and by the background events of recent mutinies on other ships. Sedgwick: "Queer and Now" (Powers) Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick's article, "Queer and Now," collected in her book Tendencies (Routledge 1994), challenges the dominant cultural conception of what it means to be queer, i.e., not part of a binaried heteronormative coupling in early 1990s America. Here it is important to distinguish between sexual identities and sexual practices. Nobody Passes: Rejecting the Rules of Gender and Conformity, edited by Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore. Judith Halberstam, Whats That Smell? Identify key approaches and debates within the field of queer theory. She went on to claim gay and lesbian sexualities should be understood and imagined as forms of resistance to cultural homogenization, counteracting dominant discourses.[3] According to de Lauretis, and queer theorists more generally, lesbian and gay sexualities enact nonnormative intimate and social modes of relating; they put new things in the world, and those new things have transformative potential. The activistCharlene A. Carrutherss Unapologetic: A Black, Queer, and Feminist Mandate for Radical Movements foregrounds the importance of intersectional thinking. In the late 1990s, several critics took the opportunity to reflect on the relations between feminism, lesbian studies and queer theory. Free shipping for many products! In exploring the definition of the designation queer and the various interpretations of political concerns of this classification, she gives readers a glimpse into the lives of those who struggle daily with the issues we have spoken about in class. Drag queens are often associated with gay culture. It seems to me that she is carving out a way to put everything on the table, to say, ok heres what were up against, heres what Im up against, heres what I can do, heres what I am doing, heres what we need to do, heres what we need fewer people to do, heres what people have always been doing. From its earliest iterations, queer theory challenged norms that reproduced inequalities and, at its best, sought to understand how sexuality intersected with gender, race, class, and other social identities to maintain social hierarchies. By refusing to accept that there is a right way to be transgender and encouraging coalition building under the newly flexible term transgender, Feinberg hoped transgender persons could build a transformative activism-oriented community. A pioneer in queer theory and literary studies, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick brings together for the first time in Touching Feeling her most powerful explorations of . neoliberalism. According to Sedgwick, both Wilde and Nietzsche undertake a revaluation of the status of heterosexual masculinity in light of the German and English attitudes toward Ancient Greek art. Additionally, when she proceeds to list the elements that supposedly compose ones sexual identity circa 1991 (7), she deftly points out that this groupings attempts at unifying the differences inherent in different peoples sexual identities into a seamless and univocal whole (8) is an impossible task, but hope exists in the fact that the idea of queer opens up a world of endless possibilities and contradictions for defining and understanding ones self. This does important political and intellectual work in troubling the idea of heterosexuality as normal and natural, a claim that has been used to marginalize homosexuals. When she presents her listing of what constitutes a family (6), she makes the argument that the bonds of blood, law, of habitation, of privacy, of companionship and succor should be disengaged from their lockstep of their uninanity on the system called the family, an idea that logically would benefit anyone regardless of sexual preference. Queer Theory critically examines the way power works to institutionalize and legitimate certain forms and expressions of sexuality and gender while stigmatizing others. Foucaults work influenced a new wave of historians committed to studying the construction of modern homosexuality. He identifies major contributors to a canon of works that built up the theory. The gorgeous narrative work done by the Foucauldian paranoid, transforming the simultaneous chaoses of institutions into a consecutive, drop-dead-elegantdiagramofspirallingescapesandrecaptures,isalsothe paranoid subjects proer of himself and his cognitive talent, now ready for anything itcan present in the way of blandishment or violence, to an Queer theory as an academic tool came about in part from gender and sexuality studies that in turn had their origins from lesbians and gay studies and feminist theory. References drag queen. In an article for Afropunk, Growing Up Queer: A Brief Lesson on Hetero- and Homonormativity, Justin Allen talks about the social consequences of heteronormativity (https://afropunk.com/2013/03/growing-up-queer-a-brief-lesson-on-hetero-and-homonormativity/). Why or why not? Instead, queer theory and activism demand publicness, reject civility, and challenge the legitimacy, naturalness, and intrinsic value of institutionswhether marriage or the militarythat regulate gender and sexuality. Detailed in a text by the same name published in 1990, the phrase refers to the ways contemporary Western thought and culture is fundamentally shaped by the category of homo/heterosexuality. For him, experiencing performance allows audiences to rehearse new ways of seeing and being in the world together, which is why he emphasizes the importance of art and music. Activist demands that have been most palatable to cisgender heterosexuals are those that foreground the right to privacy, individual autonomy, and equal access to social institutions like marriage and the military. Her books include The Transformative Potential of LGBTQ+ Childrens Picture Books (2022) and The Dialectic of Digital Culture (2019), which she coedited with David Arditi. I will begin my summary with the editors' conclusion, where they offer Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick as a final example of . It is a much newer theory, in that it was established in the 1990s, and contests many of the set ideas of the more established fields it comes from by challenging the notion of . Icon Books is licensed under a, Figure 1.2. Who are some of the key thinkers and activists who have contributed to these movements? It is a starting point for first-year undergraduates (New York: Riverdale Avenue Books, 2014). A video from the School of Life series discusses Michel Foucault, a philosopher of history who explored different institutionsmedicine, crime and punishment, and homosexualitywith the goal of radically disrupting our understanding of them (https://youtu.be/BBJTeNTZtGU). Halberstam (Shoemaker). homophile movement. According to Nguyen, this reinvention of the term bottom has the potential to interrupt, disrupt, and transform sexual, gender, and racial norms (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2014). "Sedgwick is one of the smartest and wittiest critics writing. Sedgwick argues that this reparative reading has been a strategy of queer and other marginalized groups for millennia. David Halperin, a historian of classical Greek culture, provided volumes worth of historical evidence to support Foucaults more theoretical claims. Its a pretty amazing mission statement one that accounts for the individuality and personal history of active resistance and struggle, one that is less invested in sayingwe need to do this because X, but more like we owe it to ourselves to give ourselves and others the choices we always knew where there but seemed out of reach somewhow, we need to make our stories and selves known and heard, we need to refuse being repressed and silenced, we need to do what we can to assert ourselves and fight those powers that would have us destroyed or erased. This book is the first compilation of essays to address the intersection of queer theory with Jewish identity, homophobia, and anti-Semitism and the invention of the homosexual and the modern Jew. Designating theoretical perspectives which contradict their own beliefs under this terminology is brilliant to say the least. Heterosexual men are compelled to continuously police their desires and the desires of others even to the extent of unfounded suspicion that verges on madness, as depicted in Billys murder of Claggart. Newton uses the term drag queen to describe a homosexual male who often, or habitually, dresses in female attire.[19] Newton separated the sexed body from the gender expressed on it, suggesting that there is no natural link between the two, as discussed in the previous section, but in 1972 the link between sex and gender remained tightly clamped. Change), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Enter the email address you signed up with and we'll email you a reset link. TheAdvocate interviews Kate Bornstein, and she explains the gender revolution (https://www.advocate.com/transgender/2018/11/20/iconic-kate-bornstein-explains-gender-revolution). What hopes do you have for the future of gender? This legal case reveals the double-bind structure of homosexual life: If one remained in the closet there was a danger of being found out, but coming out of the closet resulted in exposure to oppression. The groups motto was, and remains, Silence = Death.[1] An offshoot of ACT UP, Queer Nation, was founded in 1990 to fight the escalating violence and discrimination against LGBTQ+ people. Emerging in the United States and the United Kingdom in the 1950s, the movement was a concerted effort to demand equal rights for homosexuals. Many express criticism that groups like the HRC have become representative voices of the LGBTQ+ community and are failing to represent its most vulnerable members. Tan Hoang Nguyen reassesses male effeminacy and how it is racialized in cinema, art, and pornography. "Sedgwick is one of the smartest and wittiest critics writing. Fausto-Sterling introduces the terms herms, ferms, and merms to categorize anatomical, hormonal, and chromosomal differences that fall outside a male-female sex dyad. What examples of different kinds of behavior help you understand that difference? Instead of asking, How can we include queers in the existing social world, he asks, How can we queer the existing social world to make it habitable by queers? Search for other works by this author on: This content is made freely available by the publisher. He argues that medical discourse, particularly the field of sexology, which applies scientific principles to the study of sexuality, intersected with legal discourse to simultaneously create the need and the means to identify and produce knowledge about sexual identity, particularly the homosexual. Power in this instance belonged to medical and legal authorities. When Sedgwick arrived at Cornell in 1967, she had yet to make her mark on the literary world. Product Information. "Queer and Now." It works for legal protections for LGBTQ+ persons, such as promoting legislation to prevent discrimination and hate crimes. L. Feinberg, Transgender Liberation: A Movement Whose Time Has Come, in Stryker. Duggan and Puar are critical of activist initiatives that are based on inclusion into existing social institutions, because they see these institutions themselves as damaging. Sedgwick argued that an understanding of virtually any aspect of modern Western culture would be incomplete or damaged if it failed to incorporate a critical analysis of modern homo/heterosexual definition, coining the terms "antihomophobic" and "homosocial.". Assistant Professor of English, IUP. constructionist. The capacity of language and expressive actions to produce a type of being. Icon Books is licensed under a. [31] Feinberg experienced harassment and brutality at the hands of police, and the vivid descriptions of violence in the book illustrate the consequences of not embodying a socially sanctioned gender expression. About, Human Rights Campaign, accessed May 12, 2021, L. Duggan, The New Homonormativity: The Sexual Politics of Neoliberalism, in. Summarize the personal, theoretical, and political differences of the homophile, gay liberation, radical feminism, LGBTQ+ rights, and queer movements. Describe the relationship among LGBTQ+ history, political activism, and LGBTQ+ studies. Part V: Relationships, Families, and Youth, Introduction to LGBTQ+ Studies: A Cross-Disciplinary Approach. She tells us what her current life is like as someone fighting cancer and as an academic working in a field that has an overt political goal. His project explores the ways minoritarian subjects mobilize performance to survive the present, improvise new worlds, and sustain new ways of being in the world.[43]. McRuer examines how dominant and marginal physical and sexual identities are constructed, and he demonstrates through popular culture, politics, and higher education how disabilities and queerness disrupt and transform those identities (New York: New York University Press, 2006). An institutionalized way of thinking and speaking, which creates a social boundary defining what can be said about a specific topic. Sedgwick argued that an understanding of virtually any aspect of modern Western culture would be incomplete or damaged if it failed to incorporate a critical analysis of modern homo/heterosexual definition, coining the terms "antihomophobic" and "homosocial." Show more Ratings Friends & Following First, a note on terminology. The view that identity is a sociocultural construct that influences identity formation. The policy required gay, lesbian, and bisexual persons to remain closeted while in the military. Full video transcript available in the appendix. [6] Of course, this very critical, very radical relationship to the normative appears in times before the late 1980s and in places other than the United States, but it is then and there that queer activism and queer theory are named and begin to be, however hesitantly, defined. Her purpose, moreover, in composing this article is to fight against the homogenizing effects of political correctness upon art and literature, which has threatened to ameliorate and obviate the multivalenced meaning of queerness. document.getElementById( "ak_js_1" ).setAttribute( "value", ( new Date() ).getTime() ); Class meets Monday-Thursday 3.30-5.40pm in McIlhenny 205. Summary This chapter offers a Foucauldian genealogy of queer theory, which does not stabilize origins, but rather probes incommensurabilities within the field, centers the element of chance that allowed certain theories to become central, and allows for the formation of new roots to the side of those canonized for "founding" a field. Over the course of her long career, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick became one of the most important voices in queer theory, and her calls for reparative criticism and reading practices grounded in affect and performance have transformed understandings of affect, intimacy, politics, and identity. public sphere. Gay and lesbian activism has a complex history in the United States and even more so globally. Faculty web page This part in itself essentially functions for me as a de facto Queer Manifesto, one with which I frontload my rereading of the entire piece, so that I immediately feel the polemic force of Sedgwicks anti-PC-America argument. Has someone you know had their gender presentation challenged or censored? [22] This is likely reminiscent of Fausto-Sterlings provocation that there are five discernible sexes. Most often someone who identifies as a man who behaves in an exaggerated performance of femininity. homonormativity. Charlene A. Carruthers. Furthermore, they argue that capitalism and militarism do harm and can only contingently benefit individual LGBTQ+ persons. For Foucault, power does not repress a preexisting sexual identity; it provides the conditions needed for sexual identities to multiply. The struggle for queer liberation, not limited to marriage equality, is a fight that the majority population would not fight for us and with us. Her work aims to create young leaders in marginalized communities to fight for community interests and liberation. Lesbian and gay studies courses began to appear in the 1970s, and programs slowly emerged in the 1980s. An independent documentary series, My Genderation explores gender variance in short films (https://www.youtube.com/user/MyGenderation/videos). They know that the possession of one type of genital equipment by no means guarantees the naturally appropriate behavior.[20]. These meanings and values are transmitted through cultural texts like television, music, or film and are produced within social institutions like schools, museums, and families. In After the Party: A Manifesto for Queer of Color Life, Joshua Chambers-Letson explores the affect music and art can have on audiences in an attempt to theorize the conditions necessary to envision collective change.
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