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Queer Theory Presentation

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Emily Boone

on 5 March 2013

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Transcript of Queer Theory Presentation

QUEER THEORY What is Queer Theory? Teresa de Lauretis

-academic and critical theorist
-credited with coining the phrase "Queer Theory" QUEER: Whatever is at odds with the normal,
the legitimate and the dominant.

THEORY: The analysis of a set of facts in their
relation to one another. THEREFORE... In simple terms, we can conclude that queer theory is an approach to literary criticism or study that rejects the informal norm. Queer theory is not only the study of gays or lesbians, but also the study of transgender, hermaphroditism, and all other sexual orientations that compete with society's formal sexual norms. THEORY BUILDING Combining two elements of criticism: Feminist theory: gender is a part of the essential self.

Gay and Lesbian studies: challenging the societal definition of sexual identities. Who says? HISTORICAL RELEVANCE STONEWALL RIOTS: Considered the single most important event leading to the gay liberation movement and the modern fight for gay and lesbian rights in the U.S. Stonewall Riots: Series of spontaneous, violent demonstrations by members of the gay community against a police raid (June 28th, 1969 at the Stonewall Inn). Catalysts Many active social movements including:
-The African American Civil Rights Movement
-Antiwar demonstrations in the 1960's
-The liberal environment of Greenwich Village. HOMOPHILE MOVEMENT Lead by two of the largest gay and lesbian organizations:
Mattachine Society
Daughters of Bilitis They stressed 'PHILE', or love aspect of the community rather than focusing on sexuality. GAY LIBERATION MOVEMENTS -Late 1960s and early to mid 1970s
-urged lesbians and gays to "come out" publicly revealing their sexuality to family, friends, and colleagues as a form of activism, -TO COUNTER SHAME WITH GAY PRIDE. CENTRAL FIGURES JUDITH BUTLER Professor of Comparative Literature and Rhetoric at the University of California Writer of Gender Trouble notes that feminists rejected the idea that biology is destiny
theorized that masculine and feminine genders would inevitably be built, by culture, upon 'male' and 'female' bodies, making the same destiny just as inescapable. argues that sex (male, female) is seen to cause gender (masculine, feminine) which in turn, is seen to cause desire toward the other gender.
aims to refute the supposed links between these, so that gender and desire are flexible, and not 'caused by other stable factors. JUDITH BUTLER Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick (1950-2009) Considered one of the founders of the queer theory in the early 90s
Discussed the social meanings and violent force fields created by the definition of homosexuality and heterosexuality
Leader of a debate that was held on whether sexual identity is inherent or socially constructed in 1990 Michel Foucault Michel Foucault French Philosopher
Theorized that "sexuality is a discursive production, rather than an essential human attribute"
Believed that sexuality has been repressed in the Western society since the 17th century
Noted that the idea of being heterosexual or homosexual did not emerge until the late 1800s
Prior, individuals didn't identify around sexual practices American academic scholar in fields of gender studies, queer theory, and critical theory WHERE WE ARE NOW Rather than SEPARATING sexuality from other axes of social difference (race, ethnicity, class, gender, nationality, etc.) queer theory has increasingly structured inquiry into the ways in which various categories of difference inflect and transform each other. Through the Queer Theory Lens: 'America' by Allen Ginsberg Challenges all that America stands for as a capitalist nation.
"I refuse to give up my obsession.
America stop pushing I know what I'm doing"

"I sit in my house for days on end and stare at the roses in the closet" Questions from a queer point of view: IN WHAT WAYS DOES THIS TEXT CHALLENGE NORMALCY AND SOCIETAL CONSTRUCT? HOW DOES THE POET IMPLEMENT THE CULTURE OF SEXUALITY AND SEXUAL IDENTIFICATION? WHAT SPECIFIC PARTS OF THE TEXT POSE A "QUEER" POINT OF VIEW AND WHAT IS THE EFFECT?
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