Creative Approaches to Memory TFDC 1.18
Jul 04, 2023 15:45 - 17:15(Europe/London)
20230704T1545 20230704T1715 Europe/London 2.18. Queer Memory Studies? Rethinking Inheritance and Generations

This panel examines and explores the everyday relationships between memory and inheritance from queer perspectives. The importance of making, thinking, and talking about queer memory and trauma, queer approaches to loss, and unmaking of history through efforts to preserve queer experiences of the past and provide a framework for understanding contemporary queer lives in different contexts. This conversation will stem from these conversations while also paying attention to non-normative memories and archives in everyday narrative, literature, contemporary film, and TV, that do not depend on search and rescue models and open spaces to talk about the possibilities of queer generations.Through glimpses of different ways of relating to time, collectivity, and inheritability this roundtable aims to think about memory and archives through curious interactions between alternative models of relatedness, inheritance, and temporality. We aim to open spaces to think critically about the already existing paths related to inheritance of memory and hope to destabilize our perspectives on the study of memory and its circulation across time and generations. Our discussion seeks to contribute to scholarship within Memory Studies that critically engage with the repertoires of approaching pasts, presents and futures by raising questions such as:• Are there alternative ways to engage with past(s) or unsettle the links between time and space that determine what can be known, when, and by whom?• How does memory transmission move beyond the limited formulas of time and normative conceptualizations of familial bonds?• How do we conceptualize memories that circulate independently from unmarked dimensions of collective and personal memory?• How do we study queer memory and ...

TFDC 1.18 MSA Conference Newcastle 2023 conference@memorystudiesassociation.org
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This panel examines and explores the everyday relationships between memory and inheritance from queer perspectives. The importance of making, thinking, and talking about queer memory and trauma, queer approaches to loss, and unmaking of history through efforts to preserve queer experiences of the past and provide a framework for understanding contemporary queer lives in different contexts. This conversation will stem from these conversations while also paying attention to non-normative memories and archives in everyday narrative, literature, contemporary film, and TV, that do not depend on search and rescue models and open spaces to talk about the possibilities of queer generations.

Through glimpses of different ways of relating to time, collectivity, and inheritability this roundtable aims to think about memory and archives through curious interactions between alternative models of relatedness, inheritance, and temporality. We aim to open spaces to think critically about the already existing paths related to inheritance of memory and hope to destabilize our perspectives on the study of memory and its circulation across time and generations. Our discussion seeks to contribute to scholarship within Memory Studies that critically engage with the repertoires of approaching pasts, presents and futures by raising questions such as:

• Are there alternative ways to engage with past(s) or unsettle the links between time and space that determine what can be known, when, and by whom?
• How does memory transmission move beyond the limited formulas of time and normative conceptualizations of familial bonds?
• How do we conceptualize memories that circulate independently from unmarked dimensions of collective and personal memory?
• How do we study queer memory and queer haunting in film and television?



Dilara Çalışkan

'Family of Bad Girls' Relatedness and Inheritance Among Trans Sex Worker Women in Istanbul

My project explores how non-normative forms of kin and lineage-making can be theorized and experienced by trans women despite the gendered politics of memory in Turkey where the linkage between nation, language, and family is controlled and policed by the state. Through an ethnography of mutually formed mother and daughter relationships in the everyday experience of trans women who do sex work in Istanbul, I explore how trans women reshape their relationship with gender and sexuality as well as cis and hetero-normative interrelatedness of memory, family, language, and time. Drawing on the lineages curated by trans women of contemporary Turkey, I analyze the inextricable bounds between language, time, and memory in the study of kinship and offer a rare opportunity to develop micro-level insights on opening new paths for studying relatedness. By tracing new ways of memory circulation in and across different communities of women, I suggest a new theoretical framework that positions memory as a space of relatedness where world and kin-making become possible.


Anamarija Horvat

Reclaiming Her Narrative: Transgender Memory, Popular Television and Embodiment in Veneno

In March 2020, the series Veneno was released, immediately becoming one of the biggest media sensations in Spain. The series centres on the life of the television star Cristina 'La Veneno' Ortiz Rodríguez, who shot to fame during the 1990s. Herself a transgender woman, Veneno was frequently an object of both public fascination and mockery, with her life as a sex worker and gender identity often relayed in the media through sensationalistic and dehumanising terms. By focusing on a figure which was both reviled and at the same time an object of popular fascination, the series intervenes in sensationalistic and objectifying media discourses, instead humanising its central star and localising her relevance as a media figure within the broader history of Spanish transgender rights. The series thus acts as an intervention not only into the ways in which queer memory in general and transgender memory in particular is often obfuscated and removed from national memory narratives, but also comments specifically on the media's role in this and the specificity of popular media narratives which have trivialised the experience of transgender women like Veneno herself. In doing so, it can also be viewed with respect to larger developments within Spanish contemporary cinema and television, which have approached the question of memory in post dictatorship Spain through a distinct focus on the queer past (as is for example evident in Bob Pop's television series Maricon Perdido (Queer as You Are (2021)). In the case of Veneno, the series's recreation of transgender memory also intervenes into current political discourses on transgender rights, and can be argued as having played a non negligible role in popularising these issues, with even Spain's then vice president Pablo Iglesias recommending the series to his followers on Twitter. As such, this presentation will examine how Veneno comments on questions of transgender memory within the Spanish context, as well as the broader role played by queer cinema and television in shaping popular narratives of LGBTQ memory.


Golan Moskowitz

Post-Traumatic Memory and Queer Meanings

This presentation introduces alternative and non-pathologizing queer readings in response to mainstream narratives that have celebrated the "recovery" and post-traumatic "normalization" of Holocaust survivors and their families. While the latter have understood survivors' experiences primarily in relation to how well survivors acculturated to the norms of non-survivor majority populations and released, suppressed, or managed their traumatic memories, my reading of perspectives voiced by queer descendants of survivors conveys how enduring forms of difference, strangeness, and queerness of some survivors and their descendants have sometimes functioned as pathways of discredited or inaccessible meanings that center empathy, understanding, and solidarity across minoritized or endangered positionings into the present day. Specifically, this paper examines Benjamin M. Baader's unstudied poetic prose about growing up trans as the child of a survivor, as well as my own graphic narrative work about queer postmemory in the "third generation." 


Christopher Dean Castiglia & Christopher Reed

Unremembering

Starting in the mid 1980s gay men's culture has been subjected to a process we call unremembering. Unlike forgetting, which happens involuntarily, unremembering is a purposeful process that encourages people to erase a group's cultural existence for political and cultural reasons. During the AIDS epidemic, the gay culture of the 1970s was unremembered as it became associated with the promiscuity blamed for the epidemic. In the process, the innovative and progressive elements of that culture were erased as well, as ideals of sexual community became replaced (unremembered) by calls for marriage and monogamous domestic units. In response, however, beginning in the 1990s a cultural movement for queer memory arose in art, literature, and drama, explicitly countering the unremembering that ushered in a more conservative era in gay life. Gay men's culture in the 1970s was deployed to undergird projects for reimagining what sexual culture might look like at the end of the twentieth and beginning of the twenty-first centuries. On this panel, we will address the dynamics of unremembering as it arose in the aftermath of AIDS and continues to this day, as some of the same dynamics of unremembering ("cancelling") have arisen in certain kinds of trans theory. Ideas of gender performativity, understood as iterations that signal the pleasurable unrealizability of gender norms, for instance, have been unremembered in favor of recognizable gender identities conceived as inherent and essential. Drawing on our analysis of artists and writers who insisted on the importance of gay memory to sustain innovative and progressive social politics, we want to look to figures engaged with remembering the relevance of gay and especially lesbian movements that might serve as enabling heritages.

Graduate Student
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University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Lecturer
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Northumbria University
Assistant Professor
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Tulane University
Distinguished Professor of English
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Pennsylvania State University
Distinguished Professor of English and Visual Studies
,
Pennsylvania State University
Professor of film studies
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Linnaeus University
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