Center for LGBTQ Studies (CLAGS)

Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2002


A student came into my office the other day who provided a direct challenge to my efforts to queer the curriculum. Let me say first that, although I respect the value of teaching courses on topics that are presented as queer-marked — indeed, I teach graduate courses in English on Queer Theory and Queer Filmmaking - my ideological preference in the courses I teach in both Spanish and Portuguese is to engage in queer readings across the canon, toward demonstrating that 1) sexual/gender identity is problematic in all texts, and any facile or obvious attribution is likely to be the result of un/undertheorized reading, and 2) the force of homophobia keeps us from seeing the problematics of sexual/gender identity or intimidates us into ignoring it if we happen to see it. While queer-marked courses are likely mostly to attract those committed to queer interests, courses taught under the aegis of queering the curriculum may take many students by surprise, and some act like they have stumbled into the wrong course: "Wasn't this course supposed to be about Argentine theater? So why are we talking about the constructing of sexual/gender identity?"


This article was originally published in CLAGSNews, vol. 12, no. 1.



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