Gender Studies | Topics in Gender Studies: Theorizing the Invisible: Intersections of Race and Lesbian Sexuality
G104 | 13813 | Leimbach, J

This course investigates the relationship between race, gender,
lesbian sexuality, and class.  Using critical race, gender, and
queer theory, we will examine the ways in which these identities
interact in the construction of women of color as they are affected
by female same sex desire and concerns that are specific to this
intersection, as addressed by scholars and writers who share these
identity categories and by those who do not.  In order to accomplish
this, the class is divided into two distinct sections, the first
examines theoretical questions relating to the notion of identity,
specifically sexuality, gender, and race as they function both
independently and interactively.  Of particular interest in this
section are questions of community membership and exclusion,
concerns about discourse around the notions
of “woman,” “lesbian,” “authenticity,” and the “closet” that render
the experiences of lesbians of color invisible, the effects of
Eurocentricity and white supremacy upon individuals who are
marginalized by this paradigm, cultural ideologies that
effect “acceptable” enactments of lesbianism, and strategies
theorized by lesbians of color in an attempt to gain “voice” and
incorporate themselves into the dialogue.  The second section allows
the students to apply their theoretical understanding discussed in
the first half of the course to questions of representation within
both literature and visual media, with an emphasis on film and
television, which position lesbians of color in prominent roles,
allowing the students to examine the ways in which theory mirrors or
contests the specificity of these representations.  This course will
be writing and reading intensive.