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Queering Paradigms IV

South-North Dialogues on Queer Epistemologies, Embodiments and Activisms

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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.

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“Marijuana is a Crime but Homophobia is Just Fine!”: The Scandalous Logics of Queer Solidarity

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← 214 | 215 → JOSEPH JAY SOSA

Some initial first-hand accounts of the nation-wide protests that are sweeping Brazil at the time of writing reported that LGBT activists were being excluded and sometimes harassed within the protest crowds. How ironic for an uprising that has to date been utterly queer in the sense that it has refused a single narrative and failed to adhere around a single cause or leader. This chapter considers a smaller series of marches in São Paulo, Brazil’s largest city, that in crucial ways prefigured the current uprising and offer an object lesson in queer solidarities. The Freedom Marches that took place in May and June of 2011 were originally conceived of as a response to the São Paulo state court’s prohibition of a pro-marijuana march. Police repression in São Paulo and the announcement of homophobic and anti-environmental policies by the federal government, however, soon brought five thousand LGBT, marijuana, mass transit, and environmental activists together under the banner of “anti-prohibitionism”. This unexpected coming together of distinct movements with seemingly disparate agendas suggests that the solidarity among actors consisted of more than expressly common interests or identities. Indeed, a more queer solidarity emerged. When I refer to queer solidarities, I am primarily interested in how solidarities can operate in unruly and incalculable ways that resist normative political structures and demand transformative politics. Queer solidarities are characterized less by who comes together and more by how they come together. Sometimes, however, queer solidarities manage...

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