Category: News

Queer Language Matters

I recently co-authored a short article in anticipation of this weekend’s Lavender Languages and Linguistics Conference for Anthropology News. In it we preview the Conference – now in its 22nd year – and argue why queer language matters, and why queer people themselves must remain at the center of conversations about LGBTQ realities. Read it here.

The conference takes place at American University, February 13-15, 2015. For more information, see the conference page.

MA Thesis Film Available Online

M, who volunteers at a charity shop in a town outside Manchester

I completed my MA Visual Anthropology documentary in late 2009, but didn’t make it widely available, at the request of the primary research participants. Now, five years later, the protagonists have all moved on with their lives to a place at which they feel able to share this film. We hope that you find it insightful, and informative. Thanks to the women of WAST for their support. (Click below to watch)

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Immigration reform without a politics of pity

no one is illegalA few quick thoughts on demanding immigration reform, without a politics of pity:

Reading a lot of Op Eds this week calling for Executive Action on Immigration Reform. Some are written by people directly affected by deportations, others are by organization leaders/ advocates, but featuring example stories of those similarly impacted. While it’s extremely important that those voices are heard, I’m frustrated by the increasing common framing of the issue around a politics of pity, rather than of justice. Immigration reform advocates are relying far, far too heavily on emphasizing individuals’ suffering and making impassioned, heart-string tugging pleas for compassionate action. While there’s space for testimony in the movement, it seems to be coming at the expense of a more forceful critique, which I believe is much-needed right now.

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Into the field…

As of September, I have been living in New England, carrying out PhD dissertation research. I am working with people who have suffered persecution on the basis of their sexual orientation and/or gender non-conformity and are consequently seeking asylum in the U.S. I’ll continue to update this blog whenever possible, and will return to Washington DC in Fall 2014.