hands open holding letters that spell LGBTQ

Associated Faculty: Michael K. Borgstrom

Co-director and Founding Faculty, LGBTQ Research Consortium

Office: AL-271 | Phone: (619) 594-6284 | Email: [email protected]

Michael K. BorgstromIn my previous scholarship on LGBT issues, I've examined how sexuality, race, and gender intersect in past eras, and I've been particularly interested in the ways that queerness can augment our received knowledge about minority identity.  In more recent work, I've extended this focus into contemporary time periods, focusing on film and popular culture.  My current research links these historical and analytical interests by considering how cultural production from earlier eras might help contextualize the dizzying amount of recent interest in LGBT persons, and it also considers the ideological repercussions of such attention.  In the wake of extended discussions and debates about LGBT civil rights (which have been primarily focused on marriage equality), lots of people have articulated lots of opinions about queer identity and culture.  My new work examines some of the parameters of this debate, as well as the resulting new social expectations attached to queer persons.  Thus while a great deal of LGBT scholarship has been dedicated, for example, to discussing specific queer figures or analyzing aspects of queer identity, my current work takes a slightly different trajectory; it aims to shift scrutiny away from queer people, as a group, and to appraise, instead, broad cultural reactions to queerness.  In considering how queerness has become the subject of very public discussion, my new project explores a series of questions that circulate around this topic: What does it mean to see queerness?  What does it mean not to see queerness?  What are some of the social demands on queerness? What does it mean to hate queerness?  What does it mean to adore queerness? 

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