events & authors





Adding complexity to our timetables, but wonderful in every way too are events going on this term that are folded into our class in a range of ways: authors of books we are reading will be on campus, some for big events and some coming to our class.

Jo Paoletti will be visiting our class to discuss Pink & Blue and also her new book, just about to be published, Sex & Unisex.


Paoletti is faculty here at UMD, in the AMST program, and a long time pioneer in transdisciplinary study. She will visit our class to talk about her books! So bring your interests and questions, bouncing off what you have read and what you have been able to find out about her and her books! She is the first of several authors who will either visit class or who will be on campus for exciting events!

To prepare for her visit please do the following:
• READ: Paoletti, Pink & Blue: as much as you can but especially the Introduction (xiii-xix) and Ch4: A Boy is Not a Girl (60-84).
• If for any reason you have been unable to secure a copy of the book for today’s assignment, then make a point of using the time you would have spent reading the book to find our what you can about the author, Jo Paoletti, and reviews of the book, online. If necessary, bring that material into class instead.
• Bring questions for the author and interests to share!

Julie Enszer will be visiting our class to discuss Sisterhood, her book of poetry and memoir, and also the histories of the lesbian journal Sinister Wisdom.

Tuesday 24 Feb to discuss her book of poetry Sisterhood &
Tuesday 31 Mar to talk about the lesbian journal Sinister Wisdom and her historical research

Julie R Enszer is a scholar and poet. She has her MFA and PhD from the University of Maryland, and is the author of two collections of poetry, Sisterhood (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2013) and Handmade Love (A Midsummer Night’s Press, 2010). She is editor of Milk & Honey: A Celebration of Jewish Lesbian Poetry (A Midsummer Night’s Press, 2011). Milk & Honey was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award in Lesbian Poetry. She is the editor of Sinister Wisdom, a multicultural lesbian literary and art journal, and a regular book reviewer for the Lambda Book Report and Calyx. Her scholarship is at the intersection of U.S. history and literature with particular attention to twentieth century U.S. feminist and lesbian histories, literatures, and cultures. By examining lesbian print culture with the tools of history and literary studies, she reconsiders histories of the Women’s Liberation Movement and gay liberation. (See her website: ) 

Masha Gessen's Maya Brin Residency will take place from April 16-25 at UMD, with public events and a conference. The Maya Brin Residency brings leading Russian scholars, artists, or cultural figures to UMD.

>Monday 4/20: 4:00 pm McKeldin Library: book talk
>Wednesday, 4/22: Public Lecture (ULRICH RECITAL HALL)
>Friday, 4/24: Conference on Freedom of Speech in Russia.

Masha Gessen, is a Russian and American journalist, author, and activist noted for her opposition to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Gessen identifies as a lesbian and has written extensively on LGBT rights and help founded the Pink Triangle Campaign. She has been described as "Russia's leading LGBT rights activist" and has said herself that for many years she was "probably the only publicly out gay person in the whole country." Gessen writes primarily in English but also in her native Russian, and in addition to writing books on Putin and Russian feminist punk rock protest group Pussy Riot, she has been a prolific contributor to such publications as The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The New Republic, New Statesman, Granta, Slate, Vanity Fair, and U.S. News & World Report. [from the Wikipedia

What if? And what then? The time and space of gender, sexuality, race, and empire are shaped by acts of speculation: both financial speculation on “futures” markets and the speculative imaginaries that invent, theorize, imagine, and enact different kinds of worlds. Queer theory, politics, and life have always engaged in speculative practice, demanding we attend to forms of kinship, politics, gender, sex, and sociality that exceed the logics of assimilation. In recent years, attention has turned both to the ways in which some queer formations can reinforce the logics of speculative capital, and to the work of speculative cultural production in imagining different, deviant worlds. This year’s lecture series invites you to join discussions about the speculation about queer bodies, objects, feelings, pasts, futures, utopias, dystopias, and transformations as our invited speakers tackle such questions as: What is speculative about queerness? How does queerness interrupt, reframe, reinterpret different forms of speculation?

All events are free and open to the public. Off-campus visitors may find directions to campus and information about parking at 

TAVIA NYONG’O, "Deep Time, Dark Time: Kara Walker’s Anarchaeology"
> Thursday, March 12, 2015; 5pm at Francis Scott Key Hall 0106
> Friday, March 13, 2015 Colloquium with Tavia Nyong’o; 12:30pm-2pm at Taliaferro Hall 2110

Tavia Nyong’o is Associate Professor of Performance Studies at New York University. He writes, researches and teaches critical black studies, queer studies, cultural theory, and cultural history. His first book, The Amalgamation Waltz: Race, Performance, and the Ruses of Memory (Minnesota, 2009), won the Errol Hill Award for best book in African American theatre and performance studies. Nyong’o has published articles on punk, disco, viral media, the African diaspora, film, and performance art in venues such as Radical History Review, Criticism, TDR: The Journal of Performance Studies, Women & Performance: A Journal of Feminist Theory, Women Studies Quarterly, The Nation, and n+1. He is the co-editor of Social Text.

MIRANDA JOSEPH, "Investing in the Cruel Entrepreneurial University" 
> Wednesday, April 1, 2015; 5pm at Marie Mount Hall 1400 

Miranda Joseph is Director of Graduate Studies, and Professor of Gender & Women’s Studies at the University of Arizona. She uses the tools of cultural studies to explore the relationship between economic processes and social formations. Her recently published book, Debt to Society: Accounting for Life Under Capitalism (Minnesota, 2014), explores various modes of accounting (financial, juridical and managerial) as they are deployed to create, sustain and transform social relations. Joseph has also published a series of essays, drawing on her institutional leadership experiences, addressing the projects of Women’s Studies, LGBT Studies and Ethnic Studies in journals such as GLQ, Feminist Formations, and Social Politics. Her first book, Against the Romance of Community (Minnesota, 2002) describes the mutually constitutive relationship between community and capitalism.

DC Queer Studies Symposium
Friday, April 17, 2015 – ALL DAY
Tawes Hall, University of Maryland

RAMZI FAWAZ, “Stepford Wives and Female Men: The Radical Differences of Female Replicants"
SHANTÉ PARADIGM SMALLS, “Superheroes, Queerness, and Anti-Blackness: Storm, Django, and Michael Brown”
Plenary: Friday, April 17, 2015; 3-4:30pm at Ulrich Recital Hall, Tawes Hall

Ramzi Fawaz is Assistant Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His research and teaching explores the broader field of queer cultural politics, which includes the texts, practices, exchanges, and performances that articulate gay and lesbian literature and culture to American public life. His book, The New Mutants: Comic Book Superheroes and Popular Fantasy in Postwar America is forthcoming from NYU Press.

Shante Paradigm Smalls is Assistant Professor of English at St. John’s University. Her current research uses critical race theory, hip hop studies, and queer theory to consider how New York City hip hop music, visual art, and film offers “queer articulations” or race, gender, and sexuality. Smalls is co-editor of “All Hail the Queenz: A Queer Feminist Recalibration of Hip Hop Scholarship,” a special issue of Women & Performance with Jessica Pabon and has publications published or forthcoming with Oxford University Press, Lateral, Criticism, and American Behavior Scientist.

JUANA MARÍA RODRÍGUEZ, "Feeling Queerly, Knowing Otherwise" 
Keynote: Friday, April 17, 2015: 5pm at Ulrich Recital Hall, Tawes Hall

Juana María Rodríguez is Professor of Gender and Women's Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, where she is also affiliated faculty with the Department of Theater, Dance and Performance Studies; the Berkeley Center for New Media; the Center for Race and Gender; and the Center for the Study of Sexual Cultures. She is one of the founding members of the Haas Institute's Center for a Fair and Inclusive Society's LGBTQ Citizen Cluster, and currently serves on the President’s Advisory Council on LGBT Students, Faculty & Staff for the University of California. Rodríguez is the author of two books, Queer Latinidad: Identity Practices, Discursive Spaces (NYU 2003) and Sexual Futures, Queer Gestures and Other Latina Longings (NYU 2014) and has published numerous articles related to her research interests in sexuality studies, queer activism in a transnational American context, critical race theory, technology and media arts, and Latin@ and Caribbean studies. She is currently working on a third book project that considers the quandaries of representing racially gendered violence, pleasure, and trauma in visual culture. 


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