Whatever. A Transdisciplinary Journal of Queer Theories and Studies https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal <div style="widows: 2;"><span style="vertical-align: baseline; font-variant: normal; letter-spacing: normal; text-align: start; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: 1; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: #ffffff; padding: 0px; margin: 0px; border: 0px initial initial;"><span style="vertical-align: baseline; background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: transparent; padding: 0px; margin: 0px; border: 0px initial initial;"><span class="Apple-style-span" style="color: #333333;"><span class="Apple-style-span" style="line-height: 24px;"><em>Whatever – A Transdisciplinary Journal of Queer Theories and Studies&nbsp;</em>exists<em>&nbsp;</em></span></span></span></span><span style="color: #333333;">to establish, support and facilitate a dialogue among researchers who work in any field related to queer studies anywhere in the world.&nbsp;<em>Whatever&nbsp;</em>is<em>&nbsp;</em></span><span style="color: #333333; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; letter-spacing: normal; line-height: 24px; text-align: start; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: 1; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; display: inline !important; float: none; background-color: #ffffff;">peer-reviewed, online, open-access; new issues appear once a year.</span></div> Università degli Studi di Pisa // Cirque. Centro interuniversitario di ricerca queer en-US Whatever. A Transdisciplinary Journal of Queer Theories and Studies 2611-657X <p><em>Whatever</em> is an open access journal, which means that all articles are available on the Internet to all users immediately upon publication. Our articles are published under the terms of the <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/">Creative Commons Licence 4.0 by-nc</a>, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial.</p> <p>Authors hold copyright without restrictions. Also, authors retain publishing rights on their articles; however, it is recommended to keep track of the CC-BY-NC license and to quote original publication.</p> A preface to the first issue of Whatever https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/22 <p style="text-indent: 0.67cm; margin-bottom: 0cm; letter-spacing: normal; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 0.67cm; orphans: 2; widows: 2; text-decoration: none;" lang="en-US" align="justify"><span style="color: #000000;"><span style="font-family: Linux Libertine G, serif;"><span style="font-size: large;">From its very beginnings, queer has again and again proved its unpredictable productivity, its irrepressible vitality, its unconditional refusal to be circumscribed, defined, tamed. Queer is, of course, well established in the field of LGBTI studies, where it has quickly achieved the worldwide recognition it deserves; in addition, today, scholars and activists the world over are spinning queer outwards in a range of new and exciting directions, such as (to name but a few) neuroqueer, animal queer, queer economies, queer pedagogies, or the queer politics of migration. Their daring and original work is a powerful testimonial to the productivity and vitality of a cluster of theories which deserve to be more widely known and applied, both in scholarship, teaching, and research, and in activism, advocacy, and policy-making.</span></span></span></p> <p style="text-indent: 0.67cm; margin-bottom: 0cm; letter-spacing: normal; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 0.67cm; orphans: 2; widows: 2; text-decoration: none;" lang="en-US" align="justify"><span style="color: #000000;"><span style="font-family: Linux Libertine G, serif;"><span style="font-size: large;">However, scholars working in queer studies, both in and out of academia, are still often marginalized; one of the aspects of this marginalization is the dearth of publishing venues, which discourages potentially original and creative researchers from pursuing their interest in queer studies, and from contributing to the development of the field. This has a negative impact on both the queer studies community and on scholarly, social, and political discourse in general.</span></span></span></p> <p style="text-indent: 0.67cm; margin-bottom: 0cm; letter-spacing: normal; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 0.67cm; orphans: 2; widows: 2; text-decoration: none;" lang="en-US" align="justify"><span style="color: #000000;"><span style="font-family: Linux Libertine G, serif;"><span style="font-size: large;">The purpose of <em class="western">Whatever </em>is to host, facilitate, and promote a conversation among scholars working with queer theories, whatever their research interests, methodological allegiances, and disciplinary affiliations. We hope that this will not only contribute to the growth of queer studies as an ever more diverse and imaginative field of enquiry, where original, daring, and relevant work is conceived, produced, and shared, but that it will foster a diverse and mutually respectful community where people reflecting within the framework of queer theories will be able to to share their work, to reach like-minded readers, to initiate collaborations, to make things happen. </span></span></span></p> <p style="text-indent: 0.67cm; margin-bottom: 0cm; letter-spacing: normal; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 0.67cm; orphans: 2; widows: 2; text-decoration: none;" lang="en-US" align="justify"><span style="color: #000000;"><span style="font-family: Linux Libertine G, serif;"><span style="font-size: large;">At its most abstract, queer’s research programme hinges on the questioning of categories and the deconstruction of performances. Thus, a truly queer approach to scholarship and research cannot but begin by questioning the categories and performances which define normal and normative scholarly identities as they are constituted, exacted, and rewarded. Two of the most fundamental constructs in the production of academic normativity are the system of the disciplines, with its definitions, boundaries, and hierarchies, and the opposition between specialists and laypeople, which entails the systematic devaluing of the latter’s experiences and forms of knowledge, and the distrust of their abilities to achieve insight into their own predicament, and to elaborate viable solutions to their own problems.</span></span></span></p> <p style="text-indent: 0.67cm; margin-bottom: 0cm; letter-spacing: normal; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 0.67cm; orphans: 2; widows: 2; text-decoration: none;" lang="en-US" align="justify"><span style="color: #000000;"><span style="font-family: Linux Libertine G, serif;"><span style="font-size: large;">The forms and devices of normativity and oppression overlap and strengthen one another. This makes any faith in a reductionist epistemology of separate disciplines not only intellectually simplistic but politically futile. Queer theory is not an idle pastime but a basic and effective tool to achieve change: it can accommodate any disciplinary perspective because the world is bigger than any possible description; it can accommodate any methodology because the world is more complex than any possible model. Questioning the disciplinary and methodological categories on which scholarly work is based does not mean to be disciplinarily incompetent or methodologically naïve: it means to have a lucid and sober vision of the limits of any method and of the arbitrariness of all disciplinary boundaries. As well as celebrating the affective roots of queer (with an allusion to Maria Bello’s 2016 book, <em><span style="font-weight: normal;">Whatever. Love is Love</span></em>), <em class="western">Whatever </em>aims to emphasize the difference between the lack of methodological and disciplinary awareness of “anything goes” and the responsible and self-reflective eclecticism of “whatever works”. Which can, of course, be read both as an act of all-inclusive acceptance and as an affirmation of the strengths of flexibility.</span></span></span></p> <p style="text-indent: 0.67cm; margin-bottom: 0cm; letter-spacing: normal; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 0.67cm; orphans: 2; widows: 2; text-decoration: none;" lang="en-US" align="justify"><span style="color: #000000;"><span style="font-family: Linux Libertine G, serif;"><span style="font-size: large;">In its refusal to let issues be defined and hemmed in by disciplinary boundaries, and in its aim towards the co-production of a form of situated, embodied, methodologically aware and politically active knowledge, where not only “specialists” of different fields, but also laypeople are involved, listened to and honoured, transdisciplinarity should be acknowledged and celebrated as a vital and fundamental part of any intellectually and ethically responsible project to engage and disseminate queer theories.</span></span></span></p> Journal Board of Directors ##submission.copyrightStatement## http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0 2018-07-25 2018-07-25 1 1 A queer whatever: political figures of non-identity https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/4 <p>The essay proposes a journey through whateverness, in an attempt to rethink difference through a desire for a ‘whatever difference’ – a difference that is not specifically different – and a desire for a being with no specific name. The essay maps out the whateverness at work in queer theory and politics, and consists of six texts: Text 1 is “Whatever!” On exasperation”; Text 2 is “A trip to the death zone” (on Queer Nation); Text 3 is “Queer demos. Plunging into the whatever of democracy” (on Jacques Rancière); Text 4 is “The force of emptiness” (on Judith Butler and Ernesto Laclau); Text 5 is “Agamben in the disco: pausal politics” (on Agamben and disco dancers); Text 6 is “Becoming whatever” (on Paul B Preciado <em>Testo Junkie</em>).</p> Marco Pustianaz ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 1 33 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.4 A research programme for queer studies https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/23 <p>Starting from a definition of queer as the deontologization of categories and the denaturalization of performances, this paper aims to delineate a research programme for queer studies based on American sociologist’s Harvey Sacks’s work on social categories. This would make it possible both to generalize the application of queer theory to the analysis of the repressive consequences of all forms of categorization, and to elucidate these repressive effects in a huge variety of social contexts and situation, thus considerably broadening the range of convenience of queer theory.</p> Carmen Dell'Aversano ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 35 73 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.23 The Chinese encyclopedia and the living dead https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/14 <p>This article presents a case study in queer hermeneutics dealing with the construction of a corpus in a comparative study. More specifically, I propose to queer the category ‘living dead’ by restructuring its internal taxonomy. This will be achieved through the intersection of two approaches to categorization, both developed in the field of cognitive sciences as elaborations of Wittgenstein’s notion of ‘family resemblance’: Eleanor Rosch’s prototype theory and George Lakoff’s discussion of classification strategies in the Dyirbal language. I will then analyse the epistemological implications that derive from restructuring the taxonomy of the living dead in the light of the notion of ‘nonce taxonomy’, described by Eve Sedgwick in <em>Epistemology of the Closet</em>. My aim will be to show, firstly, that Rosch and Lakoff could provide nonce taxonomy with the theoretical support it needs; and secondly, how the field of comparative literature could be queered through the systematic use of prototype-based and nonce-taxonomic categorization.</p> Mattia Petricola ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 75 91 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.14 Gay orgies under the big top https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/5 <p>In <em>Freud’s Drive</em> (2008), Teresa de Lauretis tries to keep the Freudian concept of the drive together with the Foucauldian category of biopolitics, through the mediation of Fanon’s understanding of race. Indeed, according to Jean Laplanche, the drive does not coincide with the instinct, but it leans on the instinct and sticks onto the bodily surface. By doing so, it individuates an intermediate region between the physical and the psychic, like the one where race spreads out and biopolitics acts upon. From this region, the drive troubles the inscription of the subject into the social order, pushing it towards its dissolution. We should start from there if we wish not only to overcome vain dichotomies in queer theory between essentialism and constructivism, or between political and apolitical thinking, but also ‘to do justice’ to Freud and Foucault. And if we wish to stay queer while doing queer theory.</p> Lorenzo Bernini ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 93 103 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.5 On doing ‘being a misfit’: towards a constrastive grammar of ordinariness https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/9 <p>This paper aims at exploring the shaping of normality, in the<br>hegemonial patterns which constitute the difference between the<br>performances of social failure and success, by presenting the methodology<br>and some key results of an extensive ongoing research project about the<br>representation of misfits in Western literature. Through the analysis of the<br>literary representation of a variety of interactions between misfits and<br>‘normals’, my work aims to investigate the primordial shaping of<br>normative constructs in a number of apparently benign forms of social<br>exchange such as conversation. Beyond its thematological framework,<br>stemming from a traditional comparative setting, my research project aims<br>at a comprehensive analysis of the repressive thrust of normality and of the<br>various socially relevant meanings which can be expressed through the<br>literary representation of its imperfect performance, from the cautionary<br>tale to the return of the repressed.</p> Alessandro Grilli ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 105 121 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.9 Why bisexuality is queer https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/10 <p>The essay starts with the author’s <em>Positioning</em>, a feminist practice of disclosing her own intellectual and political perspectives – since knowledge is situated, never neutral. In section 1. <em>Coming to terms with bisexuality </em><span style="font-style: normal;">naming</span> practices, labeling and definitions are discussed, to introduce the reader to the arena of debate around bisexuality and queer, and introduce intersectional and decolonial perspectives. Section 2. <em>From the margins of queer theory</em> demonstrates how bisexuality has occupied, from its very origins, a marginal space in Lgbti queer studies; it also touches upon the struggle against biphobia and for recognition of bisexual people. Section 3. <em>B</em><em>isexuality and queer </em><em>s</em><em>paces - beyond </em><em>W</em><em>estern eyes</em> looks at the epistemological limitations of the monosexual paradigm within queer spaces, the necessity to decolonize them and use non-dichotomous perspectives. The section giving the title to the essay 4. <em>Why bisexuality </em><em>i</em><em>s queer </em>explains the author’s motivations, to be taken as an axiomatic starting point for an earnest discussion among queer scholars and activists. 5. <em>Re-queering the queer movement</em> ends with the necessity of intersectional alliances, in order not to restrict to sex, gender and sexuality the subversive potential of the queer perspective; and the need to take into account some neglected topics, such as Poly-amorous and Asexual love.</p> Laura Corradi ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 123 156 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.10 Queer histories and identities on the Ecuadorian coast https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/3 <p>This article looks to critique the heteronormative discourses with which both authors grew up in Ecuador in the 1970s and 80s. We do this through a thorough archaeological and historical analysis of Ecuador’s past, but always looking to destabilize the heterenormative discourse which has served as a hegemonic stronghold that has not only strangled the day-to-day livelihood of several generations of Ecuadorians but in a similar way served as an ideological vice on national historical production and culture. It is our hope that through the ethnohistorical, ethnographic and archaeological material discussed in the article we are able to express a more realistic picture of the sexual and gender diversity present in this part of the Americas during pre-Hispanic (and even contemporary) times.</p> María Fernanda Ugalde O. Hugo Benavides ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 157 182 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.3 Tony Duvert: a political and theoretical overview https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/12 <p>The late French writer Tony Duvert gave voice, scandalously, to the child-lover he never hid he was. He outlined, with rare precision, a desiring subjectivity struggling for existence in a hostile society, which portrayed him as a criminal. The right to homosexuality; the battle against the condemnation and the repression of underage sexuality; the deconstruction of the scary image of the ‘paedophile’, a bugbear typically represented as a rapist ogre; the invective against parents (the actual source of violence and of the castration forces deployed against children) and the institution of the family (the backbone of a morbid and unjust society); the ferocious criticism towards sexual and emotional capitalism, parenthood and the “bourgeois economic scheme of libidinal investment”: those are some of the themes Tony Duvert deals with in his essays, and on which we focus in this paper.</p> Ezio Puglia Irene Peano ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 183 197 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.12 Queering the box(e) https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/8 <p>This analysis starts with an ethnographic research (participant observation as a data collection method) that aims to compare two types of boxing gyms: a “commercial” gym (a gym that does not prepare a competitive level athletes but offers a fee based courses) and a “community” gym (usually in occupied spaces, often for free and it is based on shared values among athletes such as anti-fascism, anti-racism, anti-sexism and anti-ableism). The purpose of this part of the research is to investigate the construction of masculinity and femininity through the exercise of this discipline that is traditionally considered a masculine one in the two different contexts. The second part of the research will focus on the specificity of the “community” boxing gyms that are spreading more and more in recent years in Italy and that are forming a national network redefining the lines of this sport. In particular, the aspect on which we will focus is the discussion on the categories of masculine and feminine in the matches.</p> <p>The proposal is to form the sports categories according to different parameters from those of biological sex and gender, in this particular case based on weight and height. This because biological sex does not necessarily match the gender and these are not binary. Unhinging these binaries would allow on the one side to avoid the medicalization practices still provided by IALF and by the CIO to bring certain bodies through the exercise of this discipline that is traditionally considered a masculine one the two categories (we refer here to the cases of intersex people undergo mandatory to hormonal treatments to confirm their competition category) and on the other to untie the sports categories from those gender.</p> <p>Can “community” gyms change the rules of the sport? What is the relationship between sports categories and gender categories in the broadest sense? Does seconstructing the first have an effect on the latter?</p> Elisa Virgilii ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 199 214 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.8 Voci aliene https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/7 <p>Per volontà di Sisto V, alla fine del cinquecento, fu proibito alle donne in tutto le Stato Pontificio di esibirsi nei teatri e di cantare durante le funzioni liturgiche. Per quasi tre secoli la scena bel cantistica italiana fu dominata quindi dagli evirati cantori, uomini <em>cisgender</em> che venivano castrati prima della muta della voce, in modo da mantenere la loro capacità di cantare nel registro acuto, sopperendo alla mancanza delle donne sui palcoscenici e nelle chiese. Sebbene in questa pratica non ci fosse la volontà di creare un terzo sesso, il grandissimo successo di questi cantanti, oltre che alle indubbie capacità vocali, era fortemente legato al perturbamento di genere che provocavano nel pubblico. In questo lavoro mi prefiggo, attraverso il mio particolare sguardo di uomo transessuale, attivista, studioso e cantante per diletto del repertorio barocco, di far emergere i punti di convergenza tra la fruizione della voce e dei corpi dei cantori con quelli delle persone transessuali del nostro tempo e di riflettere su alcune questioni di genere in musica, basandomi anche sulla questione di chi si ritiene oggi l’erede di questi artisti quasi mitologici.</p> Egon Botteghi ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 215 232 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.7 Performare la specie https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/11 <p class="western" style="margin-bottom: 0cm; line-height: 200%;" align="justify"><span lang="en">In the novel </span><span lang="en"><em>Birdy</em></span><span lang="en">, William Wharton tells the story of a boy who wants to become a bird. The process of building a post-human subjectivity on the part of the protagonist can be explored through some conceptual tools attributable to queer theory, in particular that of “performativity” developed by Judith Butler. These theoretical constructs will be reviewed in relation to the construction of the species binarism ( “performativity of species”, “animal drag”, etc.) and the processes through which the human and non-human identity, and their relationships, emerge. The reinterpretation of <em>Birdy</em> will consider the fluctuation between failure and success of parody, between subversion and reinforcement of hegemonic norms of human exceptionalism. The destabilization of species boundaries cannot be undertaken individually: this fact highlights the role of animal agency and the relational feature of the transition as process developing around the recognition of a non-human subject. Taking into account the intersection of species and gender matrixes </span><span lang="en-US">–</span><span lang="en"> the protagonist embodies a particular type of resistance against heteronormativity </span><span lang="en-US">–</span><span lang="en">, I will try to investigate the conditions under which it is possible to speak of animality as an “action" rather than as an “essence” or an “attribute”.</span></p> <p class="western" style="margin-bottom: 0cm; line-height: 150%;">&nbsp;</p> <p class="western" style="margin-bottom: 0cm; line-height: 200%;" align="justify">Nel romanzo <em>Birdy</em>, William Wharton narra la storia di un ragazzo che vuole diventare un uccello. Il processo di costruzione di una soggettività postumana da parte del protagonista può essere letto attraverso il concetto di “performatività” (Judith Butler), in relazione alla costruzione del binarismo di specie e ai processi attraverso i quali emergono le identità umane e animali. La rilettura di <em>Birdy</em> tiene conto dell’oscillazione fra fallimento e successo della parodia, fra sovversione e rafforzamento delle norme egemoni dell’eccezionalismo umano. Il carattere inevitabilmente non individuale di tale impresa di destabilizzazione dei confini di specie fa emergere il ruolo dell’<em>agency</em> animale e il carattere relazionale del <em>passing</em> in quanto processo che necessita del riconoscimento da parte di un soggetto non umano. Considerando l’intersezione fra matrici di specie e di genere, si cerca di indagare a quali condizioni sia possa parlare di animalità come “azione”, anziché come “essenza” o “attributo”.</p> Marco Reggio ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-01 2018-07-01 1 1 233 263 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.11 Queer narratives of cancer: Eve K. Sedgwick’s “White Glasses” https://whatever.cirque.unipi.it/index.php/journal/article/view/26 <p>Through a reading of “White Glasses”, an essay included in Eve K. Sedgwick’s <em>Tendencies</em>, this paper invites a double perspective: on the one hand, a comparative approach to feminist narratives of cancer (from Audre Lorde to Gayatri Spivak reading and translating Mahasweta Devi); on the other, a reflection on Sedgwick’s contribution to queer thinking on temporality. It is also an attempt to broaden our own perception of Eve K. Sedgwick by turning to her later interest in Buddhism and textile art. Thus, the focus on “White Glasses” shifts between the temporal scale of Sedgwick’s lifetime and the wider cultural history of feminist body politics in the 1980’s and early ‘90s. This is the decade when feminism increasingly became queered, a shift that is followed here through the lens of AIDS, illness and bodily transformation – a nexus powerfully interrogated, and embodied, by Eve K. Sedgwick.</p> Paola Di Cori Marco Pustianaz ##submission.copyrightStatement## 2018-07-11 2018-07-11 1 1 265 283 10.13131/2611-657X.whatever.v1i1.26