Show Less
Restricted access

Educators Queering Academia

Critical Memoirs

Series:

Edited By sj Miller and Nelson M. Rodriguez

The memoirs in this collection represent a cross-section of critical reflections by a queerly diverse set of individuals on their experiences inhabiting a variety of spaces within the field of education. In their stories, the authors share how they queered and are continuing to queer the academy in relation to questions of teaching, research, policy, and/or administration. Their memoirs speak across generations of queer educators and scholars; collectively their work highlights an array of theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches. As snapshots in time, the memoirs can be taken up as archive and studied in order to gain perspective on the issues facing queers in the academy across various intersections of identities related to ethnicity, culture, language, (a)gender, (a)sexuality, (dis)ability, socio-economic status, religion, age, veteran status, health status, and more. By way of the memoirs in this volume, a richer body of queer knowledge is offered that can be pulled from and infused into the academic and personal contexts of the work of educators queering academia.
Show Summary Details
Restricted access

Chapter Ten: Sanctioning Unsanctioned Texts: The True Story of a Gay Writer

Extract

← 90 | 91 →

CHAPTER TEN

Sanctioning Unsanctioned Texts: The True Story of a Gay Writer

MICHAEL WENK

 

In the TV show Transparent (Soloway, 2014), Jeffery Tambor plays Mort, a retired professor and father of three adult children who, late in life, begins to transition to a woman, Maura. We see flashbacks of Mort in the 1980s, searching a magazine rack at a bohemian bookstore for answers about his predicament (being constructed as a man). Mort is forced to seek answers outside the sanctioned literacies of the university setting. Inside a seedy bookstore, he finds information about his identity in “tawdry” magazines.

Like Mort, queer students understand the shortcomings of the “autonomous” approach to literacy (Street, 2003) found in schools, and on their own time, they turn to documentaries, sitcoms, young adult novels, blogs, public health websites, chatrooms, and YouTube channels—to name a few—as a means to explore and affirm their queer identities. With characteristics of interactivity and fluidity, out-of-school literacies bear little resemblance to the “formally imposed/officially sanctioned sequenced curriculum which is founded on texts as information sources” (Lankshear & Knobel, 2006, p. 6). Even so, queer youth could benefit from educators who could help to mediate texts and support students as they discover and try on identities.

When I was 13, I needed a teacher to show me possibilities for authoring a queer life. I needed a teacher to say, “This is a queer...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.

Do you have any questions? Contact us.

Or login to access all content.