Queer Cultures and Democracy (NYC)

In the last ten years, several Latin American nations have witnessed decisive progress in the legal recognition of non-normative sexualities and gender identities. Argentina passed the same-sex marriage law in 2010 and the gender identity law in 2011, followed by Uruguay in 2013; Colombia also approved the legal recognition of same sex couples, and in Mexico, Cuba, Brazil, the pressure of queer demands and visibility in the public sphere is stronger than ever. The conventional map of “advanced democracies” crafting models of democratization that could be exported to less developed nations seems definitely challenged: a new understanding of the complex, and multiple temporalities of queer cultures in North and South America is more necessary than ever. In order to explore this rich and multi-layered landscape, this course wants to trace and reconstruct the historical detours of queer cultures in Buenos Aires and New York as cities that epitomize queer struggles in Argentina and the US. Taking as starting point the present context of growing acceptance and inclusion of queer citizens both in Latin America and the US, the course revisits the last three decades in order to question the dominant and frequently reductive narratives of steady, lineal progress. This class is aimed at developing an understanding of the nuances and contradictions of this complex historical transformation. 1. Elaborate critical perspectives on the historical transformations of queer urban cultures in the last four decades within a comparative, hemispheric frame 2. Provide critical tools to analyze and interpret the relations between culture, politics and sexuality 3. Criticize and complicate the assumptions about historical progress and modernization that have shaped the relations between North American and South American cultural imaginaries 4. Develop research skills in social and cultural studies such as archival research, interview, field report, etc.  

In the last decade, many Latin American nations have witnessed decisive progress in the legal recognition of non-normative sexualities and gender identities. The conventional map of “advanced democracies” crafting models of democratization to be exported to “less developed” nations seems definitely challenged: a new understanding of the multiple temporalities of queer cultures in North and South America is even more necessary than ever. In order to explore this multi-layered landscape, this course is aimed at reconstructing the historical detours of queer cultures in Buenos Aires and New York, considered enclaves of queer cultures in Argentina and the US respectively. The course revisits the last three decades in order to question the dominant and frequently reductive narratives of lineal progress. Taught simultaneously in Buenos Aires and New York, the class includes critical readings of queer cultural production as well as work on local archives and interviews with activists and GLTTBI organizations.

Course Information

SPAN-UA 481

Undergraduate

4 Points

Term Section Instructor Schedule Location

Spring 2018

1
Gabriel Alejandro Giorgi
W: 12:30 PM - 3:15 PM BOBS LL143