Performing gender, race and nation. The queer turn in contemporary Latin American literature (1990‑2021)

Editor’s introduction


  • Gabriele Bizzarri University of Padua



Queer/Cuir, Latin American identity, Performativity, Latin American contemporary literature


The constant and significant presence of queer motifs in Latin American literature of the last thirty years should not be glossed over. Of course, the recruiting of yet another imported label, trafficked from the geographical, economic and academic “North” into a third-world context should not be taken for granted; and it will also be important to vigilate over the modes and circumstances of a theoretical landing which will have to negotiate its ambiguous conquests with the specificities of a peripheral context. However, it is just as important to signal that the theory’s antinormative and destabilizing potential seems to find the “natural” context in which to unfold in a continent which, from a number of viewpoints, in the overlapping of its manifold wildcards, emerges into the history of Modernity without being able to fully dwell in any of its categories. In Latin America queer becomes the emblematic catalyst of the locally active difference in all possible inflections, the ideal trigger of the apocryphal versions of the apparently already written story of the plausible relationships between bodies and territories, versions which pour forth not only from the incongruencies of gender and sexuality, but also from the ethnic, sociopolitical, and epistemic discontinuity which is written in characters of blood in the mind-blowing chronicle of these lands. So that it comes to work as a powerful mechanism of contemporary interpellation of the old and deceitful story of “Latin American identity”.


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Performing gender, race, nation: the queer turn in contemporary LatinAmerican...