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Instructor Professor Lyndon K. Gill Stanhope Hall 005 (609) 258-1787 email@example.com Description Why is homophobia so endemic in black communities? Why do blacks and queers have such enmity for one another? These plaintive questions are often the unfortunate impetus for most popular conversations about blackness and queerness. Foreclosing much of the discussion before it has even begun, these questions crowd out a host of other considerations. What new conversations result from rejecting the false premise that there exists an inherent— seemingly infectious— aversion to queerness among black peoples? If we refuse the presumption that blackness and queerness are mutually exclusive, what lessons might we learn from subjects who are black and queer? These latter questions have been the impetus for a new field of scholarly inquiry known as Black Queer Studies. This interdisciplinary course explores over two decades of work produced by and about black queer subjects throughout the circum-Atlantic world. While providing an introduction to various artists and intellectuals of the black queer diaspora, this seminar examines the distinct sociocultural, historical and geographical contexts in which “black queerness” as a concept is embraced or contested. We will interrogate the transnational and transcultural mobility of specific aesthetics as well as racial and sexual identity categories more broadly. Our aim is to use the prism of artistry to highlight the dynamic relationship between Black Diaspora Studies and Queer Studies. We will read the poetry of Essex Hemphill and Audre Lorde, watch Jennie Livingston‟s Paris is Burning against Marlon Riggs‟ Tongues Untied, listen to the disco grandeur of Sylvester and the sultry genre bending sound of Me'Shell NdegéOcello, place the portraits from Robert Mapplethorpe‟s Black Book alongside the photography of Rotimi Fani-Kayode. These artistic works provide points of entry for considering the theoretical propositions of black queer scholars like Audre Lorde, Barbara Smith, June Jordan, Kobena Mercer, Cathy Cohen, Angela Davis, E. Patrick Johnson, Roderick Ferguson, Robert Reid-Pharr, Samuel Delany, Rinaldo Walcott, M. Jacqui Alexander and Gloria Wekker among others. Spring 2011: Monday-Wednesday 1-30-2:50 pm
Week 1: Writing a Black Queer Past Omise'eke Natasha Tinsley, "Black Atlantic, Queer Atlantic: Queer Imaginings of the Middle Passage" Thomas Glave, “He Who Would Have Become „Joshua,‟ 1791” Selections, George Chauncey, Gay New York: the Making of a Gay World 1890-1940 Selections, Siobhan Somerville, Queering the Color Line: Race and the Invention of Homosexuality Selections, Roscoe and Murray, Boy-Wives and Female Husbands: Studies of African Homosexualities Week 2: The Black and The Queer (Part I) Audre Lorde, “The Master‟s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master‟s House” Isaac Julien, “Black Is, Black Ain‟t: Notes on De-essentializing Black Identities” Stuart Hall, “What is this „Black‟ in Black Popular Culture” Dwight McBride, “Can the Queen Speak? Racial Essentialism, Sexuality, and Authority” Kobena Mercer, “Black Masculinity and the Sexual Politics of Race” Huey Newton, "A Letter to the Revolutionary Brothers and Sisters” Film Screening, Marlon Riggs, Black Is…Black Ain’t
Black Gay Man: Essays Selections. “Dark & Lovely: Black Gay Image-Making” Gavin Butt. Aberrations in Black: Toward a Queer of Color Critique Selections. Looking for Langston Film screening. Anzaldúa and Moraga. E. The Politics of Passion: Women’s Sexual Culture in the Afro-Surinamese Diaspora Selections. Michael Warner. Samuel Delany. Sylvester . The Collected Poems of Audre Lorde Selections. Portrait of Jason Film screening. "Queens of Language: Paris Is Burning" Seth Clarke Silberman. Cathy Cohen.Week 3: The Black and The Queer (Part II) Kobena Mercer. “Gender is Burning: Questions of Appropriation and Subversion” Jackie Goldsby. In the Life: a Black Gay Anthology Selections. Roderick Ferguson. Essex Hemphill. Punks Selected episodes. Patrick Johnson. Gary in Your Pocket: Stories and Notebooks of Gary Fisher Film screening. “The Uses of the Erotic: the Erotic as Power” Selections. “Black Macho Revisited: Reflections of a SNAP! Queen” Marlon Riggs. Paris is Burning Film screening. Roscoe and Murray. “Remembering This Bridge Called My Back. Tongues Untied Film screening. Rodney Evans. Kortney Ryan Ziegler. James Baldwin Selections. Kathryn Bond Stockton. Boy-Wives and Female Husbands: Studies of African Homosexualities Selections. Times Square Blue Selections. Sedgwick and Fisher. The Trouble With Normal: Sex. Marlon Riggs. Patrick-Ian Polk. Robert Reid-Pharr. Patrick Johnson. Beautiful Bottom Beautiful Shame: Where “Black” Meets “Queer” Selections. Sweet Tea: Black Gay Men of the South Selections. Audre Lorde. “Imitation and Gender Insubordination” Judith Butler. The Boundaries of Blackness: AIDS and the Breakdown of Black Politics Selections. Isaac Julien. “Travelling Theory: the Cultural Politics of Race and Representation” Audre Lorde. “Lighting the Harlem Renaissance A Fire!! Bruce Nugent‟s Bohemian Politic” Week 6: Black Queers on Screen (Part II) Film screening. “Tongues United: an Interviewing with Marlon Riggs” Week 7: Black Queer Social Science Selections. Me'Shell NdegéOcello Selected songs. Gertrude “Ma” Rainey Selected songs and videos. Joseph Beam. “Unleash the Queen” Essex Hemphill. Patrick-Ian Polk. Still Black: a Portrait of Black Trans Men Week 8: Black Queer Sounds Selected songs. Gloria Wekker. Remembering Ourselves” Week 5: Black Queers on Screen (Part I) Film screening. Times Square Red. Noah’s Arc Kobena Mercer. Directed by Desire: the Collected Poems of June Jordan M. “Stop that Acting! Performance and Authenticity in Shirley Clarke‟s Portrait of Jason” Marlon Riggs. E. June Jordan. Appropriating Blackness: Performance and the Politics of Authenticity Selections. Shirley Clarke. Jennie Livingston. This Bridge Called My Back: Writings By Radical Women of Color Selections. Jacqui Alexander. Brother to Brother: New Writings by Black Gay Men Selected writings. Politics and the Ethics of Queer Life Week 4: A Black Queer Literary Ancestry Selections. Brother to Brother Judith Butler.
Cheryl Dunye. Afrekete: An Anthology of Black Lesbian Writing Film screening. “The Combahee River Collective Statement” Selections. the Music. “The House the Kids Built: the Gay Black Imprint on American Dance Music” Selections. Notes on the Margin of the Black Book (installation) Kobena Mercer. Lisa C. Patrick Johnson. Theft and Rumor in the Work of Luther Vandross” E. Smith and Holiday Jason King. The Black Book Glenn Ligon. The Audre Lorde Project [www. al. Venus Boys Film screening. Lyle Ashton Harris Selected photographs. “Queer Black Studies: An Annotated Bibliography” Review website. AfroHomorphisms Selected spokenword performances. Kevin Aviance Selections. Watermelon Woman Week 11: Black Queer Photography Selected photographs. Blues Legacies and Black Feminism: Rainey. Angela Davis. Rotimi Fani-Kayode Selected photographs. Jacqui Alexander. Words of Fire: an Anthology of African American Feminist Thought Audre Lorde. June Jordan. Gabriel Baur. Black Queer Studies: a Critical Anthology Selections. “The Camera as Kinky Machine” Week 12: Black Queer Studies — the Future of an Inter-discipline Film screening. A Litany for Survival: the Life and Work of Audre Lorde Week 10 Black Queer Women (Part II) Selected spokenword performances. Me'Shell NdegéOcello Nicholas Briggs. Robert Mapplethorpe. Some of Us Did Not Die: New and Selected Essays Selections. The Fabulous Sylvester: the Legend. Catherine McKinley. Griffin and Parkerson. “Reading Racial Fetishism: the Photographs of Robert Mapplethorpe” Kobena Mercer. Climbing Poetree Selected songs. “Any Love: Silence. James and Moore. Staceyann Chin Staceyann Chin. Moore. Ajamu X Selected photographs. Zami: a New Spelling of My Name Selections. Black Nations/Queer Nations? Selections. Shari Frilot. Beverly Guy-Sheftall. Audre Lorde. Lyndon Gill. Gladys Bentley Barbara Smith et.Selected songs and videos.org] . The Other Side of Paradise M. Johnson and Henderson. Does Your Mama Know: an Anthology of Black Lesbian Coming Out Stories Film screening.alp. Spirited: Affirming the Soul and Black Gay/Lesbian Identity Selections. Zanele Muholi Selected photographs. Penniman and Garcia. Sister Outsider Selections. Joshua Gamson. the Seventies in San Francisco Week 9 Black Queer Women (Part I) Selected press coverage. “Pedagogies of the Sacred: Making the Invisible Tangible” Selections.. “Feeling the Spirit in the Dark” Anthony Thomas.
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