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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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Foreword: Human Contingency and Freedom: A Response to “Queer Praxis”

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Foreword

Human Contingency and Freedom: A Response to “Queer Praxis”

JACQUELINE M. MARTINEZ

We live in a time when the movement for gay civil rights—pursued primarily as the right for same-sex couples to marry—has reached the chambers of the United States Supreme Court. More than four decades after Stonewall, the gay civil rights movement stands within reach of a major advance in the legal standing of gays and lesbians within our country. Perhaps it will be the case that history books written in the decades to come will identify 2015 as the year that the United States Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional to define marriage exclusively as a union between a man and a woman.

Should it come to be that same-sex couples have the right to marry in the United States, that will certainly become a significant marker for gay and lesbian couples who desire marriage for its power to convey formal recognition of their relationship. It will also become a significant marker for gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans—in short, queer—communities who have lived in marginal relationship to the mainstream of U.S. society and culture.

Yet, there is much more to the story of queer existence in the United States than the struggle for legal recognition. The movement for legal recognition is a social and political movement. But, movement at the level of culture is much less tangible...

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