A Suggestion For Professor Rob Pope

Updating the Content of Pope's English Studies' Queer Theory Section 


Professor Pope,

     You may want to expand on the topic and definition of queer in The English Studies Book by including an overview of Queer Theory. Although this is a fast-paced and rapidly-expanding theoretical field, it would be useful to include some key figures in the discipline of Queer Theory and Gender Studies; theorists such as Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick and Judith Butler have contributed to this discipline. In addition, Queer Theory is also grounded on the work of Michel Foucault.

     You may want to also touch on what Queer Theory is not. For example, Queer Theory is not to be confused with queer activism. Queer Theory deals with non-normative practices, or practices that were previously thought to be non-normative in the field of feminist theory. Finally, a definition of the words “gender” and “sexuality” and how they relate to gender studies would help increase students’ knowledge about this new field of study.

     While theorists, scholars, and members of the queer community may themselves disagree about the appropriateness of the term queer, and may even argue about existing definitions of the term, Queer Theory is a newly-emerging field of study. A disclaimer should, of course, be added to the overview of this theoretical field, indicating that it is difficult to define Queer Theory, and the word queer, and that the word itself is controversial both within and without the gay, lesbian, and trans-gender communities.

Note: The sources listed below were used as references for this post.