[URBANTH-L]CFP: Queer Futures: The Homonormativity Issue

Angela Jancius acjancius at ysu.edu
Fri Sep 8 11:35:13 EDT 2006

Radical History Review
Extended Deadline for Call for Papers
New Deadline: September 15, 2006

Much has changed since the Radical History Review's special "Queer" 
issue (No. 62, Spring 1995), in which historians and their allies 
explored "new visions of America's gay and lesbian past." Queers now 
unabashedly eye straight guys on cable television; films featuring gay 
characters and themes are celebrated by mainstream audiences, breaking 
box office records and winning major industry awards; "gay marriage" 
has emerged as the central civil rights cause for powerful 
organizations like the Human Rights Campaign; urban activists and civic 
boosters promote "gay business districts" as a means for achieving 
visibility and equality; and multibillion-dollar markets targeting gay 
and lesbian tourist dollars are booming.

For many, such articulations of gay and lesbian identity in the public 
sphere provide evidence of true social and political progress. Yet in 
the past decade, some radical activists and scholars have cited such 
developments not as progressive signs of liberation but as reactionary 
responses linked directly to the privatizing imperatives of a powerful, 
ascendant brand of neoliberal politics that coalesced in the 1990s. 
Lisa Duggan, for example, has identified this trend as evidence of "the 
new homonormativity ... a politics that does not contest dominant 
heteronormative assumptions and institutions but upholds and sustains 
them." In accordance with this new homonormativity, prominent lesbian 
and gay rights organizations increasingly embrace agendas that vie for 
acceptance within contemporary economic and political systems, thereby 
abandoning their earlier commitments to economic redistribution and 
protecting sexual freedoms. This shift has made strange bedfellows out 
of lesbian and gay rights organizations and social conservatives: both 
endorse normative and family-oriented formations associated with 
domestic partnership, adoption, and gender-normative social roles; both 
tend to marginalize those who challenge serial monogamy and those -- 
including transgender, bisexual, pansexual, and intersex constituencies 
-- who feel oppressed by a binary gender or sex system. Moreover, 
because of its economic base in the neoliberal philosophy of consumer 
rights rather than that of citizen rights, the politics of 
homonormativity exercises an influence beyond U.S. borders, through gay 
and lesbian tourism, the global proliferation of gay and lesbian-themed 
U.S. cultural productions, and economic and political interventions 
that claim to make "gay rights" a global issue.

Many queer and/or sex-positive radicals fear such neoliberal 
strategies, not only because they undermine citizens' rights but 
because they threaten to erase the historic alliance between radical 
politics and lesbian and gay politics, at the core of which has been a 
struggle for sexual freedom. In order to counter the long-term 
consequences of historical amnesia, we need new analytical frameworks 
for talking about lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer 
history that expand and challenge current models of identity and 
community formation as well as models of political and cultural 

The RHR seeks submissions that explore the lesbian, gay, bisexual, 
transgender, and queer past in relation to contemporary conceptions of 
homonormativity, neoliberalism, and globalization in North America and 

Some suggested topical fields include:

# Genealogies of homonormativities
# Homonormativity and racial formations
# Historical analyses of the politics of marriage and procreation in 
relation to gay and lesbian political and community formations
# Historical studies of the "domestic partner" in relation to law, 
corporate policy, privatization, and/or cultural production
# Studies of how homonormativities travel across borders, including 
histories of gay and lesbian tourism and organized interventions into 
issues in the name of "gay rights"
# Homonormativities in relation to transgender studies and politics
# Urban models of "gay gentrification" and contemporary configurations 
of LGBT identity
# Histories of gay and lesbian markets and consumption
# Analyses of academic culture and its disciplining of glbt studies, 
institutional development, and academic investments in homonormativity
# Critiques of homonormativity from queer of color and feminist of 
color perspectives
# AIDS activism and the politics of sex(uality) in transnational 
# Globalization, gay/lesbian identities, and cultural hegemonies
# State investments in the production and sustenance of gay and lesbian 
# Homonormativity, government policy, and social provision (including 
the impact of homonormative politics on such issues as health insurance 
provision, social services, and "disaster relief")
# Genealogies of gay and lesbian conservative political movements
# Sexual politics and history of the "right to privacy"
# Histories and critiques of identity and queer migrations
# Resistance to politics of homonormativity in U.S. and globally

The editors of this special edition invite contributions that explore 
these or any themes that relate to homonormativity, queer pasts, or 
queer futures. We welcome short reports and reflections, documents, 
photo essays, art and illustrations, interviews with activists or 
intellectuals, teaching resources – including syllabi, original 
documents, and exhibit and book reviews. RHR solicits contributions 
from activists and academics.

Procedures for submission of proposals and articles:

By September 15, 2006, please submit a 1-2 page abstract summarizing 
the article you wish to submit to rhr at igc.org.

To be considered manuscripts should be submitted electronically, 
preferably in Microsoft Word or rich text format, with "Issue 100 
submission" in the subject line.

Radical History Review
Email: rhr at igc.org
Visit the website at http://chnm.gmu.edu/rhr/rhr.htm

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