Staging Hunger, Embodying Pain: Some Queer Thoughts on Campus Organizing

Prof. Sara Kaplan, UC San Diego

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Prof. Sara Kaplan, UC San Diego

Staging Hunger, Embodying Pain: Some Queer Thoughts on Campus Organizing
Prof. Sara Kaplan, UC San Diego

This presentation revisits the 1999 student strike for Ethnic Studies at UC Berkeley in the context of the widespread student-of-color protests at UC San Diego last February. This juxtaposition of two campus-based struggles around race, gender, and knowledge production serves as the point of entry for a queer reflection on campus organizing—that is, one that looks askance, rather than backwards. How might understanding such campaigns as the performance of a collective radical ‘kinesthetic imagination’ allow us to reconceive of political protest as something that, like performance itself, represents, but does not reproduce? What truisms of campus organizing must then be jettisoned or rethought?  And what new political possibilities might be opened up?