June 23, 2015, by criticalmoment

Centre for Critical Theory Research Seminar: Is There a Transnational Queer Studies?

Speaker: Professor Donald Hall (Lehigh University)

Time: 4:00 pm, Monday 6 July

Place: A3 Highfield House

Chaired by Dr Hongwei Bao, Centre for Critical Theory

Since its birth in the early 1990s, queer theory and queer studies have circulated globally, by way of conferences, internationally influential essays and books, and other flows of scholarly information. However, today it is still worthwhile asking, “is there today a truly transnational queer studies?” This talk will examine two ways of answering that question: one is practical and skeptical; the other is theoretical and optimistic. In the first half of this talk, I will discuss the sometimes frustrating, if always exciting and rewarding work of co-editing a massive new anthology that attempts to capture “queer studies” in its current complexity and global circulation. The process of constructing The Routledge Queer Studies Reader (co-editors Hall and Jagose) has revealed many of the impediments to a realizing a transnational queer studies. The field remains constricted by linguistic, geographical, and base theoretical “norms,” even though, as a political and intellectual project, it claims to devote itself to challenging normative concepts and processes. On the other hand, there is cause for optimism. A highly dynamic “queer conversation” is flourishing globally that reveals the continuing, open-ended potentials of the field. In referencing Gadamerian concepts of dialogic challenge and epistemological change, I will conclude my talk with a set of reflections and queries that should lead to a productive conversation among audience members on the inherent limitations and still-to-be-realized potentials of queer studies in a transnational context.

Speaker’s Bio:

Professor Donald Hall is Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and Professor of English at Lehigh University, USA. A long-time social activist in the queer rights movement, he has published widely in the fields of British studies, queer theory, cultural studies, and professional studies. His current and forthcoming work examines issues such as professional responsibility and academic community-building, ethics and agency in sexuality studies, and the Victorian (and our continuing) interest in the deployment of instrumental agency over our social, vocational, and sexual selves. He is the author or editor of eleven books, including Queer Theories (Palgrave 2003), Subjectivity (Routledge 2004), The Academic Community: A Manual for Change (Ohio State, 2007), and Reading Sexualities: Hermeneutic Theory, the Future of Queer Studies (Routledge, 2009) and The Routledge Queer Studies Reader (Routledge, 2012).

For more information, please visit https://english.cas2.lehigh.edu/node/29

This is a free event. For catering purposes, please Email Dr Hongwei Bao (hongwei.bao@nottingham.ac.uk) to book a place.

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