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Queer Method

ENGL 790.401
crosslisted as: COML 790.401, GSWS 790.401
instructor(s):
M 6-9:00

Scholars in queer studies have contributed powerful critiques of the disciplines and of academic business as usual. For this reason, we might see the field as being anti-method rather than producing alternative or counter-methods. This course explores the paradox of producing positive knowledge in the absence of or in opposition to disciplinary dictates about what counts as knowledge. We will consider queer and feminist studies alongside other inter- and anti-disciplinary formations including critical race studies, disability studies, border studies, transgender studies, affect studies, and feminist science studies. Acknowledging the extent to which queer and feminist scholarship incorporate the work of traditional disciplines, we will consider several ethical and methodological cruxes in these fields.  We will focus on a range of methodological experiments in these fields including critiques of historicism, the affective turn, queer materialism, surface reading, memoir, low and high theory, queer empiricism, extravagant formalism, and assemblage theory, among others, and will attend to the ways that academic institutionalization has shaped these fields. In addition to many articles across these fields, we will read a set of example texts that mix traditional and experimental methods (Carolyn Steedman, Landscape for a Good Woman, Gloria Anzaldúa’s Borderlands/La Frontera, Samuel Delany’s Times Square Red, Times Square Blue, and Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, A Dialogue on Love).   **Note: This course does not presume prior knowledge, but familiarity with queer, feminist, transgender, and critical race studies (as well as cultural studies more broadly) will certainly make things smoother. That said, the course is designed to serve as an introduction—albeit a challenging one—to the interdisciplinary field of queer studies (with a focus on literary studies).