Queer transcultural memory: contemporary US culture and the global context

Clark, Christopher W. (2018) Queer transcultural memory: contemporary US culture and the global context. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Abstract

This thesis expands the definition of queerness through exploring its oppositionality to norms of heteronormativity tied to race, class, gender, sexuality, and disability. Reading an interdisciplinary range of cultural texts, I consider the extent to which they can be deployed to provide a counternarrative to concepts of transcultural memory, nationalism, and citizenry following recent historical events, stemming from September 11, 2001. I begin by examining the impact of domestic responses to 9/11 through “vernacular” photography, demonstrating how nationalistic responses marginalize queer identities. Expanding out to explore the transnational effects of the “War on Terror”, my second chapter reads contemporary Iraq War fiction, revealing the queer rendering of bodies that finds a foothold through military occupations abroad. Third, I look to the extra-national sites of Guantánamo Bay and Abu Ghraib to show the insidious extension of national borders, and norms, creating sites that are simultaneously intra- and extra-national. I argue that these sites operate as palimpsests of memory, crossing frontiers of the transnational, transcultural, and transhistorical. Finally, I look at the movement of queer bodies into the United States through migration narratives, returning to the ubiquitous sites of normativity within the country’s borders. My conclusion ties these strands together to understand how memorialization and cultural representations of historical events impact queer bodies and the cultural conditions of the US. I establish how these bodies affect, and are affected by, literal, figurative, and imaginative movements, and the implications for state discourse. Ultimately, I demonstrate the “Americanization” of globalization dictates how such bodies are conceptualized and is subsequently treated in other nations.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Art, Media and American Studies
Depositing User: Jackie Webb
Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2019 13:33
Last Modified: 01 Apr 2019 13:33
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/70410
DOI:

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