In this essay I argue that Baldwin’s depiction of queer possibility depends on the spectacular failure of heterosexuality to ensure the future, a failure that ultimately severs heterosexuality from its procreative logics and justifications. Gabriel is torn between competing drives: his desire to ensure the Grimes line and desire itself. Ironically, the latter troubles the former, as the excess of sexual desire threatens to overrun the marital and procreative logics that make the heterosexual normative. Gabriel models heterosexuality as both desire and procreative engine, highlighting the ways in which heterosexuality contains within itself the seeds of its own undoing.


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