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Topics in Media and Cultural Studies Roundtable: 11 May 2011

The Department of Media Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand invites you for its first roundtable this quarter in the Topics in Media and Cultural Studies series. Please join us Wednesday 11 May between 14.00-16.00 hrs in CB8 (Central Block, Wits East Campus).

The following speakers will present papers:

Tommaso Milani

‘Are queers really queer?’ Language, identity and same-sex desire in a South African online community (abstract)

Patricia Watson

Writing ourselves OUT of the closet: the process of developing gay and lesbian life stories in Malawi

For further information, please contact Dr Sarah Chiumbu (Sarah.Chiumbu@wits.ac.za).

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One Comment

  • matshidiso says:

    Very interesting and insightful talk. I enjoyed and was enlightened somewhat, by both presentations. I kept wondering though, whether the insistent awayance from being categorised as “queer” (in the term’s traditional lingustical sense) did not in a way reinforce the inferiority stereotype ussually infered on the GLBT.

    I dont know, I just feel that, as Patricia was saying, we are all, in one way or another “queer”, we’r born ‘queer’.Norms are, by definition social constructions and not rational scietific laws to be used to distinguish between that which is “natural” and that which is not. The whole linkage between “norm” and “natural” for me, is in itself paradoxical.

    And so I feel that instead of constantly trying to likening and justifying themselves in line with the “norm” (in qestioning whether “the ‘queer’ really are ‘queer’” et.al) the GLBT (and everyone else for that matter) should rather celebrate and proudly express their ‘queerness’ as individuals first and then as the GLBT (if those categories are infact queer)

    But then again not all forms of queerness are actvely persecuted and criminalised a the GLBT are (in Malawi for instance). so I understand the reluctance to so boisteriously express these parts of their identity. However trying to mold themselves into, or emulating the norm does not legitimise their existence, I think.

    Its like steve Biko said about black poeple. “Those who are black but in their consciousness desire whiteness, insult the intelligence of the one that created them black.” (sic)

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