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Queer Praxis

Questions for LGBTQ Worldmaking

Edited By Dustin Bradley Goltz and Jason Zingsheim

Amidst rapid advances of mainstream gay and lesbian platforms, questions of essential sexual identities, queered rituals of family, queered notions of intimacy, queer considerations of time, and the possibility and value of queered systems of relation are largely absent. Resisting the public face of a normative and homogenous gay and lesbian community, and embracing a broadened conception of queerness, this book brings together 29 writers – a diverse community of scholars, lovers, and activists – to explore queer theory and embodied experiences within interpersonal relations and society at large. Enacting a critical intervention into the queer theoretical landscape, the book offers an alternative engagement where contributors centralize lived experience. Theoretical engagements are generated in relation and in dialogue with one another exploring collectivity, multiple points of entrance, and the living nature of critical theory. Readers gain familiarity with key concepts in queer thought, but also observe how these ideas can be navigated and negotiated in the social world. Queer Praxis serves as a model for queer relationality, enlisting transnational feminist, critical communication, and performance studies approaches to build dialogue across and through differing subjectivities.
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4. Queer Assemblages: How to Queer a Wedding?



On the eve of a New Year, a promise was made. A union sanctioned not by an institution, but by the force of people moving and being together. Outside, gathered in a circle around a fire, revelers counted the year down. The count staggered at first, but quickly individual bodies and voices found a common rhythm. Shoulders and heads bobbed in tempo with the count as smiling glances were exchanged. The rhythm infected the celebrants inside as the countdown spread throughout the gathering. At the moment the New Year struck, the vows were exchanged and the union authorized by the synchronicity of the count, the bodies connected through the ritual, and the joyous exchange of hugs and kisses. Hugs and kisses not “meant” for the private ceremony, but nonetheless integral to it. A bond adhered in this moment, through this community constituted of bodies, rhythms, intensities and desire.

This “wedding” snapshot illustrates the potential capacity of embodied collectives to produce queer transformations and becomings. In this example, the gathering, celebratory countdown, and the hugs and kisses of the collective of bodies constituted not only the context of the event, but consecrated the vows. The New Year’s Eve revelers created the field within which the union emerged. In related, yet constitutively different, formations the bodies collected in Goltz and Zingsheim’s Gayla also produced moments of becoming. In each of these celebrations bodies came together creating collectives that both participated in the “meaning” of...

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