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(cfp) Queer(ing) Geographies Agosto 26, 2012

Posted by paulo jorge vieira in Uncategorized.
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Proposed Session(s): Queer(ing) Geographies

Call for Papers: Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (Los Angeles, April 9-13, 2013)

Sponsored by the Sexuality and Space Specialty Group

Emily Mitchell-Eaton (Department of Geography, Syracuse University)
Sean Wang (Department of Geography, Syracuse University)

“By ‘queer’ I do not mean merely adding homosexual identities and practices to the mix. Rather, I am positing a political and theoretical perspective that suggests that sexuality is disciplined by social institutions and practices that normalize and naturalize heterosexuality and homosexual practices including marriage, family, and biological reproduction by marginalizing persons, institutions, or practices that deviate from these norms” (Manalansan 2006, 225).


“[Q]ueer lives cannot transcend categories or boundaries. The task for queer theorists, then, is to embrace the critique of identity to its fullest extent by abandoning the search for an inherently radical queer subject and turning attention to the advancement of a critical approach to the workings of sexual normativities and non-normativities” (Oswin 2008, 96).


“As such, [new scholarship in queer geographies] accounts for fractures within queer cultural politics and merges postcolonial and critical race theory with queer theory to bring questions of race, colonialism, geopolitics, migration, globalization and nationalism to the fore in an area of study previously trained too narrowly on sexuality and gender” (Oswin 2008, 90).

In the past few years, there has been a wide array of scholarship in queer / LGBT studies, both in geography and beyond. Yet as Browne (2006, 886) reminded us, “queer is more than shorthand for LGBT,” and research that focuses on non-heterosexuals does not necessarily imply a queer orientation. In the proposed session(s), we call for papers that bring queer theory into geographical research, on sexuality, gender, citizenship and beyond. Of particular interest are papers that include interdisciplinary perspectives and/or address tensions between queer and LGBT studies. The language used here is intentionally broad, for we want to include voices from as many disciplinary perspectives as possible; however, we are especially intrigued by queer interventions into the subdiscipline of population geography, a subdiscipline that traditionally relies on positivist quantitative approaches to categories and counting. Some organizing themes have been listed below, but we invite submissions from all areas of queer geographies, and they will be grouped into sessions accordingly.

·Family: The past few decades have seen the proliferation of so-called “non-traditional families”: single-mother households; mixed and multi-racial couples; familial separation and reunification of (im)migrants; gay and lesbian couples having children. Yet despite these social changes, geographers have paid relatively little attention as the unit of inquiry compared to anthropologists and sociologists, and it seems to be an area ripe for queer intervention. Specifically within LGBT studies, can we ‘queer’ family? Or do notions of family and citizenship remain (hetero)normative?

·(Im)migration: Although queer theory is relatively new to the scene of migration scholarship, it has been a very productive avenue of inquiry. Not only is (im)migration intimately linked to political economy, power and difference, queer statuses often pose significant impediments to mobility. Any non-normative sexuality, race, marital status, racial/ethnic/linguistic positionalities will most likely invite further scrutiny. Furthermore, ‘queer spaces’ in this context work beyond stereotypical urban gay ghettos, and instead direct our attention towards contested, transitional, and in-between spaces.

·Interdisciplinary Perspectives: Queer studies have provided a fertile space for engagements outside traditional disciplinary boundaries. The proposed session(s) seek to continue that trend by bringing geographers together with other queer scholars. We all have personal differences in educational background, disciplinary training, preferred methodology, specializations, etc. Such differences should be particularly productive for queering our conversations.


Please submit abstracts of no more than 250 words and a short bibliography in a single PDF document to Sean Wang (shwang13@syr.edu) by October 1, 2012. Please direct any inquiries to session organizers (Emily Mitchell-Eaton, emmitche@syr.edu and Sean Wang, shwang13@syr.edu).

Authors of successful submissions will be contacted by October 12, 2012. They will be expected to register for the conference and submit their abstracts online at the AAG website by October 24, 2012. Please note a range of registration fees will apply and must be paid before this date.




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