Title, Author & Summary



April 9, 2015

Comparatively Lesbian: Queer/Feminist Theory and the Sexuality of History

Susan S. Lanser

Reversing the conventional paradigm, I ask not only what history can tell us about sexuality, but what sexuality can tell us about history. My research relies for its core claims and findings on a comparative approach that has led me to queerer versions of spatiality and periodicity than those I inherited. It has also led me to privilege confluence over the more traditionally comparative project of influence, to engage in “large reading,” and to see the sign “lesbian” as itself a site for comparison. In claiming for female homoeroticism a central place in sexuality studies as an unmarked case, I argue that modernity itself can be read as the emergence of the sapphic—or what I call the logic of woman + woman—as an epistemic possibility.

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April 3, 2015

Queer Double Cross: Doing (It with) Comp Lit

Jarrod Hayes

The crossing of borders in both ways becomes a double-crossing in the sense of a treason in both the literal and figurative sense of the expression, of which the latter refers to bisexuality. So whereas the colloquial expression “comparatively queer” can mean queerer than some, but nonetheless not too queer, we proceeded as if there could be no such as thing as too queer. “Comparatively Queer” thus became for us a way of naming our project of queering comparative studies and making comparatist strategies central to queer studies. This particular example of going both ways was inseparable in our minds from converting (or shall I say inverting) the subject of comparison into its object. Paradoxically, this becoming-object double crosses his objectivity. Comparatively queer studies should queer the comparatist as well.

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