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The De-Mastery of Desire
A race-based oppositional paradigm has informed Chicano studies since its emergence. In this work, Sandra K. Soto replaces that paradigm with a less didactic, more flexible framework geared for a queer analysis of the discursive relationship between racialization and sexuality. Through rereadings of a diverse range of widely discussed writers—from Américo Paredes to Cherríe Moraga—Soto demonstrates that representations of racialization actually depend on the sexual and that a racialized sexuality is a heretofore unrecognized organizing principle of Chican@ literature, even in the most unlikely texts. Soto gives us a broader and deeper engagement with Chican@ representations of racialization, desire, and both inter- and intracultural social relations. While several scholars have begun to take sexuality seriously by invoking the rich terrain of contemporary Chicana feminist literature for its portrayal of culturally specific and historically laden gender and sexual frameworks, as well as for its imaginative transgressions against them, this is the first study to theorize racialized sexuality as pervasive to and enabling of the canon of Chican@ literature. Exemplifying the broad usefulness of queer theory by extending its critical tools and anti-heteronormative insights to racialization, Soto stages a crucial intervention amid a certain loss of optimism that circulates both as a fear that queer theory was a fad whose time has passed, and that queer theory is incapable of offering an incisive, politically grounded analysis in and of the current historical moment.
Queer Suburban Imaginaries
“Reading Relocations is akin to listening to a soundtrack of a favored movie from your teenage years, one whose details are perhaps forgotten, but the sound memory of which can take you, affectively, to another time, another world—to a different mode of being. With considerable style and expansive insight, Karen Tongson makes palpable the proliferation of queerness in such putatively normative sites as suburban Los Angeles. Thoroughly multi-disciplinary, theoretically savvy, archivally and methodologically innovative, this book is a lesson in how to cruise critically through the aesthetic, historic, personal, and political routes that connect places to persons and performances to identities, and present times to as yet unrealized elsewheres.”
“It’s safe to say your relationship is in trouble if the only way you can imagine solving your problems is by borrowing a time machine.”
A Global History of Love between Women
From the ancient poet Sappho to tombois in contemporary Indonesia, women throughout history and around the globe have desired, loved, and had sex with other women. In beautiful prose, Sapphistries tells their stories, capturing the multitude of ways that diverse societies have shaped female same-sex sexuality across time and place.
Leila J. Rupp reveals how, from the time of the very earliest societies, the possibility of love between women has been known, even when it is feared, ignored, or denied. We hear women in the sex-segregated spaces of convents and harems whispering words of love. We see women beginning to find each other on the streets of London and Amsterdam, in the aristocratic circles of Paris, in the factories of Shanghai. We find women’s desire and love for women meeting the light of day as Japanese schoolgirls fall in love, and lesbian bars and clubs spread from 1920s Berlin to 1950s Buffalo. And we encounter a world of difference in the twenty-first century, as transnational concepts and lesbian identities meet local understandings of how two women might love each other.
Giving voice to words from the mouths and pens of women, and from men’s prohibitions, reports, literature, art, imaginings, pornography, and court cases, Rupp also creatively employs fiction to imagine possibilities when there is no historical evidence. Sapphistries combines lyrical narrative with meticulous historical research, providing an eminently readable and uniquely sweeping story of desire, love, and sex between women around the globe from the beginning of time to the present.
The Gay Person in America Today
Contemporary and controversial, Shannon Gilreath's Sexual Politics is an important update to the continuing debate over the place of gay people in American law, politics, and religion. Gilreath incisively navigates a number of complex issues, including the delicate balance between sexual privacy and public equality, the entwining of religion and U.S. law and politics, and gay marriage. He offers astute academic observation and depth of personal reflection to create an unmatched critique of gay people in American society. Ultimately, Gilreath argues for the further emergence of a gay and lesbian ethos of public attentiveness and the practice of "transformative politics," encompassing all those activities of gay and lesbian people: art, literature, sports, business, education, spirituality, and otherwise conventional forms of politics. Conversational and written with a compelling frankness, this book is vital for the serious legal and political student and the informed general reader alike.
Passion, Politics, and Memory
Chronicling the history of sexuality in Cuba since the 1959 revolution, this book frames the relationship between passion and politics in the revolution's wider history and argues that the Cuban revolutionary regime intervened in the sexual lives of Cubans in a variety of ways and transformed key areas of Cuban life, including the family, reproduction, sexual values, and sexual relationships. Drawing from a major oral history project--the “Memories of the Revolution” oral history project conducted by a team of British and Cuban researchers (Hamilton was one of the British researchers on the team) between 2003 and 2007--Hamilton explores the experiences and perceptions of sexuality among Cubans across generations and social groups. She contextualizes the oral histories within an array of archival and secondary sources, relating them to issues of race, class, and gender, as well as to social, economic, and political change. Organized thematically, the volume opens with a historical overview that points out that after 1959 revolutionary values continued to coexist with pre-revolutionary ideologies in a potent and often contradictory mix. Succeeding chapters examine discourse on love, romance, and passion on both personal and national levels; male and female homosexuality; sexual repression; and changing gender roles and service to the revolution. Hamilton explores conflicting notions of Cuba as a site of desire on the one hand, and as a place of intense sexual repression, especially with regard to homosexuality, on the other. She identifies many ways in which revolutionary policy affected sexual behavior, including changes to policy and laws, mass education programs, leaders’ pronouncements on the relationship between good revolutionaries and private life, and the provision of incentives to encourage certain forms of sexual union and repressive measures to discourage and punish others. Hamilton argues that sexual politics were central to the construction of a new revolutionary society.
Queer Thoughts & the Politics of the Paraliterary
In Shorter Views, Hugo and Nebula award-winning author Samuel R. Delany brings his remarkable intellectual powers to bear on a wide range of topics. Whether he is exploring the deeply felt issues of identity, race, and sexuality, untangling the intricacies of literary theory, or the writing process itself, Delany is one of the most lucid and insightful writers of our time. These essays cluster around topics related to queer theory on the one hand, and on the other, questions concerning the paraliterary genres: science fiction, pornography, comics, and more. Readers new to Delany's work will find this collection of shorter pieces an especially good introduction, while those already familiar with his writing will appreciate having these essays between two covers for the first time.
On Language, Race, Sex, Science Fiction, and Some Comics--A Collection of Written Interviews
Samuel R. Delany, whose theoretically sophisticated science fiction and fantasy has won him a broad audience among academics and fans of postmodernist fiction, offers insights into and explorations of his own experience as writer, critic, theorist, and gay black man in his new collection of written interviews, a form he describes as a type of "guided essay." Gathered from sources as diverse as Diacritics and Comics Journal, these interviews reveal the broad range of his thought and interests.