This book comes at a time when the intrinsic and self-evident value of queer rights and protections, from gay marriage to hate crimes, is increasingly put in question. It assembles writings that explore the new queer vitalities within their wider context of structural violence and neglect. Moving between diverse geopolitical contexts – the US and the UK, Guatemala and Palestine, the Philippines, Iran and Israel – the chapters in this volume interrogate claims to queerness in the face(s) of death, both spectacular and everyday.
Queer Necropolitics mobilises the concept of ‘necropolitics’ in order to illuminate everyday death worlds, from more expected sites such as war, torture or imperial invasion to the mundane and normalised violence of racism and gender normativity, the market, and the prison-industrial complex. Contributors here interrogate the distinction between valuable and pathological lives by attending to the symbiotic co-constitution of queer subjects folded into life, and queerly abjected racialised populations marked for death. Drawing on diverse yet complementary methodologies, including textual and visual analysis, ethnography and historiography, the authors argue that the distinction between ‘war’ and ‘peace’ dissolves in the face of the banality of death in the zones of abandonment that regularly accompany contemporary democratic regimes.
The book will appeal to activist scholars and students from various social sciences and humanities, particularly those across the fields of law, cultural and media studies, gender, sexuality and intersectionality studies, race, and conflict studies, as well as those studying nationalism, colonialism, prisons and war. It should be read by all those trying to make sense of the contradictions inherent in regimes of rights, citizenship and diversity.
Table of Contents
Prologue Sunera Thobani, Introduction: ‘Queer Necropolitics’ Jin Haritaworn, Adi Kuntsman and Silvia Posocco, PART I: DEATH WORLDS, Chapter 1. ‘We Will Not Rest in Peace: AIDS Activism, Black Radicalism, Queer and/or Trans resistance’ Che Gossett, Chapter 2. ‘(Hyper/In)Visibility and the Military Corps(e)’ Michelle R. Martin-Baron, Chapter 3. ‘On the Queer Necropolitics of Transnational Adoption in Guatemala’ Silvia Posocco, PART II: WARS AND BORDERZONES, Chapter 4. ‘Killing Me Softly with Your Rights: Queer Death and the Politics of Rightful Killing’ Sima Shakhsari, Chapter 5. ‘Black Skin Splits: The Birth (and Death) of the Queer Palestinian’ Jason Ritchie, Chapter 6. ‘Trans Feminine Value, Racialized Others and the Limits of Necropolitics’ Aren Z. Aizura, PART III: INCARCERATION, Chapter 7. ‘Queer Investments in Punitiveness: Sexual Citizenship, Social Movements and the Expanding Carceral State’ S. Lamble, Chapter 8. ‘"Walking While Transgendered": Necropolitical Regulations of Trans Feminine Bodies of Color in the US Nation’s Capital’ Elijah Adiv Edelman, Chapter 9 ‘Queer Politics and Anti-Blackness’ Morgan Bassichis and Dean Spade
Jin Haritaworn is Assistant Professor of Gender, Race and Environment at York University in Toronto; Adi Kuntsman is Simon Research Fellow at the University of Manchester, UK; and Silvia Posocco is Lecturer in the Department of Psychosocial Studies, Birkbeck College, University of London
QUEER NECROPOLITICS is a collection of brilliantly astute and bravely explorative essays that animate and bring to life the remains and casualties of state strategies of abandonment, of wars without end, and of bare lives. Refusing the mere documentarian tasks of a scholar, the authors exhort readers to bring themselves to uncomfortable and disturbing yet productive engagements with the messy collisions of race, sexuality, and violent dispossessions in various queer sites, times and orientations of forms of "subjugations of life to the power of death." A landmark contribution.
----Martin F. Manalansan IV, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Asian American Studies and author of Global Divas: Filipino Gay Men in the Diaspora
By exhuming the death-worlds that produce some forms of vitality as little more than remaindered life, Queer Necorpolitics brilliantly performs the work of imagining a politics beyond the political. This collection is precisely the kind of theory we need—it offers thick descriptions and insurgent analysis through a rigorous indictment of the neoliberal present. These writers push us beyond the page and toward a practice of abolishing the various iterations of capture, colonization, and liquidation so that more might flourish under the banner of collective liberation.
---Eric A. Stanley, co-editor of Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex
Sharp, timely, and necessary, Queer Necropolitics explores the contemporary terrain of queer politics not to ask, "who has been left out", but "what remains" to build a queer analytics after the absorption of women?s, gay and transgender politics into a discourse of rights, protection and diversity. Queer Necropolitics answers not by sifting out every more fine identities and entities but by analyzing new differentials of disposable being in the ordinary seams of everyday life.
---Elizabeth Povinelli, the author of The Empire of Love: Toward a Theory of Intimacy, Geneology, and Carnality and Economies of Abandonment: Social Belonging and Endurance in Late Liberalism