Spring 2018 | CUNY Graduate Center | IDS 70100: Introduction to Queer Studies

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Queer Studies and Life Writing Composition (Francesca)

This week was particularly difficult for me in terms of using our commons website. I’m not sure why, but for the longest time I wasn’t able to make a new post, or rather, locate the place for adding a post, so my apologies for being MIA this week.

I think I know what kind of course I want to offer. Our discussion about infusing queer studies into other disciplines was very useful and stayed with me. My friends who work at some of the community colleges say there are lots of opportunities for teaching composition courses for students who want to improve their writing. I’m sure this is subject to change, but for now I’m thinking of offering a life writing composition course that examines examples of coming out literature (fiction or non-fiction) and television or film representation as a form of the same genre, coupled with students writing their own work either as auto-ethnography, memoir, blogs or zines. The emphasis would be on the construction of identity and community, which is not limited to the LGBTQIA+ umbrella, or queer communities. I would try to establish how this life-writing relates to the Black literary tradition, the feminist novel, and other sub-genres.

I think this lens will lead to searching for OERs through the form of blogs, zines and short stories. Right now, I am working with the QZAP Zine Archive http://archive.qzap.org/index.php/Splash/Index.

It is sometimes difficult and confusing to understand if a given source is free, but the archive is fairly easily to use, and some zines touch on “the canon” so I could get some Foucault and Butler (and others!) in there. Since so many of these sources are best viewed in their original format, online, I will likely create a Word Press site.

My next step will be seeing if a similar course is already being offered within CUNY, and how to incorporate that as a resource. For example, the LGBT Short Story class at CSI! https://lgbtshortstory.commons.gc.cuny.edu/

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