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Dennis Allen | A Place for Us: Queer Space and the Lesbian and Gay Studies Classroom

Abstract

While queer space was once primarily understood as a separate
subcultural enclave, the increasing acceptance of lesbians and gays in western culture requires a recognition that such spaces are now sites for the deployment of multiple sexual identities, both gay and straight. Using the Queer Studies classroom as a model, this essay argues that queer space should thus be seen as a space of “unequal proximity,” of simultaneity rather than of segregation. By the same token, the implicit assumption that the public sphere is, by definition, heterosexual must also be rethought as an uncanny
space where straight and queer identities are co-present.

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