Queer Pedagogy
         Kurt Love, Ph.D.
Central Connecticut State University
What is Queer?

• The word “queer” connotes:
 • Different
 • Unacceptable
 • Un-normed
Queer Theory

• Started with looking at un-normed
  sexualities with relationships to sex and
  gender
• Looked at what el...
Sex
•   Sex is oftentimes emphasizing biological characteristics or
    phenotype based on genatalia

•   Genotypic Spectr...
Gender
•   Gender is a social construction (i.e. how a
    society thinks men and women should act)

•   Gender Spectrum (...
Sex & Gender
• Is someone who is biologically a male
  automatically going to be a “man?”
• Is someone who is biologically...
Sex & Gender
• The “partnering” of sex with gender does
  not work in strict patterns
• Sex and gender are both along spec...
Sexualities

• Heterosexual or “Straight”
• Homosexual or “Gay,” “Lesbian”
• Bisexual
• Asexual
• Polyamorous
Sex, Gender & Sexuality

• A male identifying as a woman who
  partners with a male also identifies as being
  straight
• A...
Born Gay?

• Arguments of sexuality being a choice or
  being “genetic”
• People know by no later than 4th grade
• Born ga...
Norming Sexuality &
         Gender
•   Gender Norm = Hegemonically fitting
    everyone’s gender into the binary of male/
...
Sites of Hegemony
• Religions
• Public Spaces
• Family
• Schools
• Media
• Laws
Gay-Straight Alliance
        (GSA)
• Extracurricular clubs where students meet
  to be active in supporting peoples of al...
Student Efforts


• Forum Theatre in St. Paul, MN
• 8th Grade Student Promotion at Kinsella
  School in Hartford, CT
Straight Teacher?

• Why should a straight teacher care about
  issues of sexuality?
• It’s like asking, “Why should a whi...
Supporting Students
•   Should a teacher who feels that Black students
    are genetically intellectually inferior work wi...
Supporting Students
• Being present for the student
• Not claiming to know any answers
• What does the student need from y...
What Else is Queered?

• Queering groups of people
• Queering knowledge
• Queering practices
Being Queered

• Being queered means that the person/
  group, knowledge, or practice is not only
  un-normed, but it is a...
What/Who Else is Queered?
• Homeless people         • Feminists
• Wiccans                 • Intuition
• Pagans            ...
What/Who Else is Queered?
•   Boo Radley in To Kill a     •   Politicians who do not
    Mockingbird                     f...
What/Who Does the
         Queering?


• People in the dominating roles (i.e. those
  who adhere to and profit from the nor...
In a Lesson

• As with any transformative pedagogy, it’s
  not about having the “right” method...
• It’s about developing ...
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Queer Pedagogy

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I use this slide show in my education courses to discuss queer pedagogy.

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Queer Pedagogy

  1. 1. Queer Pedagogy Kurt Love, Ph.D. Central Connecticut State University
  2. 2. What is Queer? • The word “queer” connotes: • Different • Unacceptable • Un-normed
  3. 3. Queer Theory • Started with looking at un-normed sexualities with relationships to sex and gender • Looked at what else is “queered” or un- normed
  4. 4. Sex • Sex is oftentimes emphasizing biological characteristics or phenotype based on genatalia • Genotypic Spectrum • “Super Male” = xyy chromosomes • Male = xy chromosomes • “Hermaphodite” = xxy chromosomes (Klinefelter’s Syndrome) • Female = xo chromosomes (Turner’s Syndrome) • Female = xx chromosomes • Female = xxx chromosomes (tend towards more “masculine bodies)
  5. 5. Gender • Gender is a social construction (i.e. how a society thinks men and women should act) • Gender Spectrum (not a binary) • Men • Transgender • Transsexual • Women
  6. 6. Sex & Gender • Is someone who is biologically a male automatically going to be a “man?” • Is someone who is biologically a female automatically going to be a “woman?” • Transgender • Transsexual
  7. 7. Sex & Gender • The “partnering” of sex with gender does not work in strict patterns • Sex and gender are both along spectra • A person could have an xy chromosome (male - biological construction) but feel more comfortable as a woman (gender construction)
  8. 8. Sexualities • Heterosexual or “Straight” • Homosexual or “Gay,” “Lesbian” • Bisexual • Asexual • Polyamorous
  9. 9. Sex, Gender & Sexuality • A male identifying as a woman who partners with a male also identifies as being straight • A female identifying as a man who partners with a man also identifies as being gay
  10. 10. Born Gay? • Arguments of sexuality being a choice or being “genetic” • People know by no later than 4th grade • Born gay = Disease to be treated
  11. 11. Norming Sexuality & Gender • Gender Norm = Hegemonically fitting everyone’s gender into the binary of male/ female • Sexuality Norm = Hegemonically making everyone as heterosexuals • Homophobia used as a tool to hegemonically reinforce the norms of sexuality
  12. 12. Sites of Hegemony • Religions • Public Spaces • Family • Schools • Media • Laws
  13. 13. Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) • Extracurricular clubs where students meet to be active in supporting peoples of all sexualities and genders • New Britain High School has the largest GSA of any high school in the United States.
  14. 14. Student Efforts • Forum Theatre in St. Paul, MN • 8th Grade Student Promotion at Kinsella School in Hartford, CT
  15. 15. Straight Teacher? • Why should a straight teacher care about issues of sexuality? • It’s like asking, “Why should a white teacher care about racial issues?”
  16. 16. Supporting Students • Should a teacher who feels that Black students are genetically intellectually inferior work with Black students? • Any students? • Should a teacher who feels that any sexuality except for heterosexuality is morally wrong work with students of diverse sexualities? • Any students?
  17. 17. Supporting Students • Being present for the student • Not claiming to know any answers • What does the student need from you? • Working with counselors and school psychologist to ensure that student is supported
  18. 18. What Else is Queered? • Queering groups of people • Queering knowledge • Queering practices
  19. 19. Being Queered • Being queered means that the person/ group, knowledge, or practice is not only un-normed, but it is also unacceptable and subordinated. • Uncomfortable • “Weird”
  20. 20. What/Who Else is Queered? • Homeless people • Feminists • Wiccans • Intuition • Pagans • Barbara McClintock • Indigenous Ecological Knowledge • Voodoo
  21. 21. What/Who Else is Queered? • Boo Radley in To Kill a • Politicians who do not Mockingbird follow the narrow discursive norms of their • A person speaking Arabic party (i.e. Dennis Kucinich, Ron Paul) in the U.S. • A person speaking Ebonics • A Black woman in a suit with braids • Conscientious objectors
  22. 22. What/Who Does the Queering? • People in the dominating roles (i.e. those who adhere to and profit from the norms) • Contexts
  23. 23. In a Lesson • As with any transformative pedagogy, it’s not about having the “right” method... • It’s about developing the “right” question. • Meaningful, thought-provoking, connected to real world issues

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