Notes: Karma Chávez, “The Precariousness of Homonationalism: The Queer Agency of Terrorism in Post-9/11 Rhetoric”

Chávez, Karma. (2015). The precariousness of homonationalism: The queer agency of terrorism in post-9/11 rhetoric. QED: A Journal in GLBTQ Worldmaking, 2(3), 32–58.

Summary:

Chávez describes how homonationalism’s protections depend on the exclusion and leaving for dead of others.

Keywords: citizenship, homonormativity, LGBTQ, queer, queer rhetorics

Quotations:

“This tension between scapegoating and leaving or marking for death on the one hand, and protecting and fostering life on the other, reveals the precarious positioning of gays and lesbians in homonationalism; even when included, we are always potentially threatening to the “us” that many imagine to comprise the national body” (p. 33-34).

“The queer necropolitics of homonationalism ensures that some queers are always left to die” (p. 48-49).

“The homonormative white, middle-class U.S. citizen gay and the queered brown Muslim immigrant terrorist cannot be reduced to one another. A reading of two archetypes of each of these figures reveals their suspension together, and the way in which queerness comes to be framed as the central agency that enables the destruction of the nation in rhetoric ranging from the extremely conservative to the moderate or mainstream” (p. 49).

“For those who through their exceptionalism experience the fantasy of protection within the precarious project of homonationalism, this haunting is a call to reject this protection and to refuse participation in necropolitical logics. One way to reject and refuse is to center the perspectives and work of those queers left or targeted for death—the queer people of color, poor, trans, and gender nonconforming queers, homeless and disabled queers, prostitutes, and drug-using queers” (p. 50).

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