In addition to being Black Music Month, June is also Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. For our first set of recommendations for this week, the Stone Center Library would like to highlight some more of our recent acquisitions related to LGBT studies, reflecting a wide range of approaches – from journalism to queer theory to performance studies. Enjoy!
“Queer theory and the gay rights movement historically have been in tension, with the former critiquing precisely the identity politics on which the latter relies. Yet neither queer theory, in its predominately poststructuralist form, nor the gay rights movement, with its conservative inclusionary aspirations, has adequately addressed questions of identity or the political struggles against normativity that mark the lives of so many queer people. Taking on issues of race, sex, gender, and what he calls the ethics of identity, Fryer offers a new take on queer theory ‘one rooted in phenomenology rather than poststructuralism’ that seeks to put postnormative thinking at its center. This provocative book gives us a glimpse of what thinking queer can look like in our posthumanist age.”
“Highlighting certain socioeconomic and cultural trends, this exploration discloses the new dynamics shaping contemporary lives of African Americans. Using information from conversations with mavericks within black communities–such as entrepreneurs, artists, scholars, and activists as well as members of both the working and upper classes–this powerful examination gives voice to what the author has deemed “post black” approaches to business, lifestyles, and religion that are nowhere else reflected as part of black life. The argument states that this new, complex black identity is strikingly different than the images handed down from previous generations and offers new examples of behavior, such as those shown by President Obama, gays and lesbians, young professionals, and black Buddhists. Contending that this new generation feels as unwelcome in traditional churches as in hip-hop clubs, this dynamic provocation dispels myths about current, popular black identity.”
“This book challenges black religious and cultural critics to rethink theological and ethical approaches to homosexuality. Sneed demonstrates how black liberation theology and has often characterized homosexuality as a problem to be solved, and his work here offers a different way for black religious scholars to approach black homosexuality and religious experiences. Drawing on a range of black gay writers from Essex Hemphill to J.L. King, Sneed identifies black gay men’s literature as a rich source for theological and ethical reflection and points black religious scholarship toward an ethics of openness.”
“Bulldaggers, Pansies, and Chocolate Babies shines the spotlight on historically neglected plays and performances that challenged early twentieth-century notions of the stratification of race, gender, class, and sexual orientation. . . Blues-singing lesbians, popularly known as ‘bulldaggers,’ performed bawdy songs; cross-dressing men vied for the top prizes in lavish drag balls; and black and white women flaunted their sexuality in scandalous melodramas and musical revues. . . James F. Wilson has based his rich cultural history on a wide range of documents from the period, including eyewitness accounts, newspaper reports, songs, and play scripts, combining archival research with an analysis grounded in a cultural studies framework that incorporates both queer theory and critical race theory.”
(Excerpts from Syndetic Solution summaries.)