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Junior Colloquium: Critical Queer Studies

AMST 201
Fall 2015 not offered
Crosslisting: FGSS 201
Certificates: Social, Cultural, and Critical Theory
Course Cluster: Disability Studies, Queer Studies

This junior colloquium will give you a solid theoretical foundation in the field of queer studies. Although "queer" is a contested term, it describes--at least potentially--sexualities and genders that fall outside normative constellations. However, as queer studies has been institutionalized in the academy, in popular culture, and in contemporary political movements, many argue that today, "queer" shorthands gay and lesbian (or LGBT...), is too easily co-optable (e.g., QUEER EYE FOR THE STRAIGHT GUY), or that queer studies' construction of the body, desire, and sexuality effaces or ignores crucial material conditions, bodily experiences, or cultural differences.

This course, a reading-intensive seminar, will address these debates. After a brief exploration of some of the foundational works in queer theory, we will focus on the relationships--and disagreements--between queer theory and other social and cultural theories designed to illuminate and critique power, marginality, privilege, and normativity: critical race theory, transgender studies, queer anthropology, Marxism, feminist theory, and disability studies. Rather than understanding queer studies as a singular or coherent school of thought, we will continuously problematize queer studies as a field and a mode of analysis, asking, What kinds of bodies or desires does queer describe? What are the politics of queer? What are the promises of queer theory, and what are its perils? What are the key sites for queer activism today? What is the future of queer?

This course is excellent preparation for a queer studies concentration in American studies. Students should expect to end the semester confident of their ability to read queer theory, critique it, and imagine the uses to which queer theory might be put.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: SBS AMST
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (AMST)(CSCT)(FGSS)

Last Updated on JUL-19-2024
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