South-North Dialogues on Queer Epistemologies, Embodiments and Activisms
Edited By Elizabeth Sara Lewis, Rodrigo Borba, Branca Falabella Fabrício and Diana de Souza Pinto
South-North Dialogues on Queer Epistemologies, Embodiments and Activisms is composed of research presented at the fourth international Queering Paradigms Conference (QP4), held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In line with the QP project ethos of bringing together diverse epistemological and geographical allegiances, this volume intends to contribute to building a queer postcolonial critique of the current politics of queer activism and of queer knowledge production and circulation. However, rather than perpetuating the North-South dichotomy, the papers gathered here are an effort to establish global dialogues that crisscross those axes, as well as attempts at queering epistemologies, socio-political bonds, and bodies, embodiments and identities. They endeavour to trouble unequal geographies of knowledge – namely the North as an exporter of theories and the South as their importer; the North as a producer of knowledge and the South as its object of study – hosting enormous potential for reinvention.
Possible Appropriations and Necessary Provocations for a Teoria Cu
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I’ve been reading Testo Yonqui (Preciado 2008; “Testo Junkie” in English), avidly, almost addictively. The reading works like the testosterone gel that Beatriz Preciado spreads over her shoulders and belly: it stimulates me. Chapter 8: “Pharmacopower”. Preciado writes about popular knowledge and the markedly female use of ancestral herbs; I imagine Preciado using not testosterone chemical gel, but ayahuasca (a psychedelic brew made from plants and used by Amazonian peoples). Feeling less European and thus less masculine, she loses her gender. She lets herself be forest, shaman, Iansã (a spirit entity from the Afro-Brazilian Candomblé faith) in order to think about Judith Butler while listening to the myth of the “Diabo sem Cu”, or “Devil without an Asshole”, which explains how certain Amazonian fish were created. According to the tale, the Devil without an Asshole had a rectum below the mouth, but a neighbor offered to change its location to the usual spot near the legs where the human anus is found. However, the neighbor, in order to get revenge for past misdeeds the devil had committed, speared the Devil without an Asshole through the length of his body, gutting and killing him. The devil’s intestines spilled into the river and turned into fish, which explains why certain fish species in the Rio Negro have anuses close to their mouths.
Now we shall set the myth aside and return to the Spanish philosopher Beatriz Preciado, one of the people who knows...
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