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Queering Paradigms II

Interrogating Agendas

Series:

Edited By Bee Scherer and Matthew Ball

This book offers a fundamental challenge to a variety of theoretical, social, and political paradigms, ranging from law and justice studies to popular culture, linguistics to political activism.
Developing the intellectual project initiated in Queering Paradigms, this volume extends queer theorizing in challenging new directions and uses queer insights to explore, trouble, and interrogate the social, political, and intellectual agendas that pervade (and are often taken for granted within) public discourses and academic disciplines.
The contributing authors include queer theorists, socio-linguists, sociologists, political activists, educators, social workers and criminologists. Together, they contribute not only to the ongoing process of theorizing queerly, but also to the critique and reformulation of their respective disciplines.

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Part III - Queer Spaces -113

Extract

PART III Queer Spaces Hongwei Bao People’s Park: The Politics of Naming and the Right to the City People’s Park On 25 August 2009, an unarmed clash between five policemen and fifty gay men occurred at the “People’s Park” in south China’s Guangdong Prov- ince. The police asked the gay men to leave the park, claiming that “this is People’s Park; it is not for homosexuals.” They threatened to arrest those who refused to leave. The gay men in this space usually complied, but not this time. Some argued back: “Comrades are also part of the people. Why can’t we stay here?” They insisted that they had done nothing wrong and should have equal rights to others enjoying the park. Non-gay identified passers-by also gradually became involved in the dispute. With about a hundred people challenging their actions, the police had to retreat. The crowd cheered as the police left. Most Chinese-language mainstream media in China remained silent about this incident, largely because of well-established media censorship. But China Daily, the leading English-language newspaper, covered the inci- dent on 29 August 2009 with the title “Homosexuals clash with police in park” (Qiu 2009). Over the next few days, reports about this incident filled the international press and China’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender websites. In cyberspace, many discussions condemned the police violation of LGBT(IQ) rights in China. There were also debates regarding whether gay people should have sex in public places. A local gay activist using the pseudonym Ahqiang,...

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