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Black Queer Identity Matrix

Towards An Integrated Queer of Color Framework

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Sheena C. Howard

This volume launches the first sustained discussion of the need for a queer of color conceptual framework around Black, lesbian female identity. Specifically, this volume addresses the necessity for a more integrated framework within queer studies, in which the variables of race/ethnicity are taken into consideration. This book is unique in that it highlights a triple-jeopardy minority group that has been historically marginalized and concludes with the proposal of a much-needed framework for researchers to begin to create a baseline of knowledge/research under the umbrella of the Black Queer Identity Matrix.
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Chapter 2: Towards an Integrated Queer of Color Framework

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CHAPTER 2

Towards an Integrated Queer of Color Framework

This chapter will delve into queer theory, the history of the word “queer,” and the limitations of queer theory as it relates to the incorporation of people of color. Queer theory does not offer a viable framework to holistically delve into inquiry around the LGBTQ community of color. Following the discussion on queer theory, this chapter provides an overview of E. Patrick Johnson’s Quare Theory, which is relevant to the discussion around conceptual frameworks that take race, gender, and sexuality into consideration.

Queer Theory

The master narrative of American culture has maintained a compulsory heterosexual notion of reality. This dominating and oppressive system is supported and embedded in institutions such as education, healthcare, marriage, and jobs. Emerging from the cracks of heteronormative reality comes the unheard, silenced, and often forgotten voices and representations of social lives and reality. Decades of scholarship and theoretical development have significantly advanced this notion in academic disciplines; specifically, cultural studies and humanities programs have begun to make room for nonnormative representations, identities, and bodies. Developing from a spectrum of fields, queer theory is a multidisciplinary approach that questions the mass- production of patriarchal-heteronormative and Euro-American imperialism, which affects the ways in which societies, people, and cultures move and develop.

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