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Jack, just a quick fan letter to tell you how much I appreciate your essay “Charming for the Revolution: A Gaga Manifesto.” As a 62 year-old, white, hetero male I want to tell you how much I admire your intellect and your insight in this essay. I’ve never read anything of yours before, nor have I run across your name, but, rest assured, I’ll follow your work from now on. Nice job. I think you have identified something in the great zeitgeist that will turn out to be very true and very common; such as the remark on state-sanctioned intimacy. I learned some things. Thanks for this piece of work. Your admiring fan,
I saw you speak at the University of Illinois a couple years ago on the Traitor in Me is the Traitor in you. It was excellent. The art you showed was really fascinating. I wondered if you were familiar with the artist John John Jesse? Very interesting stuff. Seemed like it might be something you would be interested in looking at…
Anywho, that’s all. I just love your work and wanted to say hi, and maybe turn you on to a new artist.
I was super thrilled to see you use my “Hierarchy is Chaos – Anarchy is Solidarity” poster in your talk (I saw the youtube video of the talk at PSU)!! Got any ideas for other posters that would be neat to see? I’m feeling inspired by your ideas and might create something related.
Hi Ash – wow, thanks for being in touch! I love that poster – where can I actually get a copy? Can I buy one from you?? I am feeling inspired by your ideas…we need to collaborate on something!! best,
Thank you for writing Skin Shows. It is possibl my favourite ever critical work on the Gothic.
I attended your presentation and discussion on Marriage at the Emergence Symposium at Western Unversity, London, Ontario Canada in early February.
Is your presentation published or available for reference? In particular, I believe that your comments about homonormativity and queer regulation resulting from same-sex marriage are germaine to a paper I am writing.
(I asked a question regarding ‘traditional’ marriage as a component of historical institutional social control ensuring the desired intergenerational transfer of property from male to male, and within a given ethnicity or race.) I spoke of marriage providing ‘heirs with provenance’. I took from your presentation the ironic outcome of same-sex marriage legislation being the extention of social/political control over the queer community more than a true expansion of equality. This theme of society moving to regulate queerness arises in another paper I am writing.
I am working on a paper exploring Carol Mason’s analysis of queer terrorists in ‘Perpetual States of Emergency: The Sexuality of Terrorism in America’. Mason—she says— anchors her analysis in Jasbir Puar’s three themes in ‘Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times’. (While acknowledging how impenetrable Puar’s writing is, I concede only a tenuous terminological overlap of Ellen Degeneres as ‘homonationalistic’ in the two texts.
What I do see in both texts is the idea (as with same-sex marriage) of the social exploitation of ‘the gays’ in society for opposite ends; Mason exposing the Fundamentalists’ need for ‘the gays’ on whom they can attribute social decay necessitating a return to religiousity and Puar’s proposition that the US needs homonormative persons as proof of social superiority which thus permits acts of aggression and colonialism against ‘others’.
P.S. Your presentation was cogent and inspiring.
Dear Jack Halberstam, we don’t know each other, yet, rather than listing of possible connections, I’ll take a leap into the substance of my query since, respecting you must be busy. I recently read your Queer Art of Failure and feeling the need to respond differently than the non-responses I found in academic reviews, I wrote my own, titled: “I’ll give you something to embrace: Queer Art of Failure.” (You see, I’m quite happy with the title, and hope for a possible reply on its strength.) I am now writing a review of Gaga Feminism for a new German magazine called Gender, but I wondered if you might be curious to read the Queer Art Review…
All the best, and thanks for your fantabulous entry on pronouns!
PhD Media and Communication
yes, please send your review and thank you!
I love your work! Gaga feminism is very interesting and compelling (although I do think I could offer a few counter-arguments). I love what you said about wanting pronouns to be attached to gender, not sex. Brilliant. We need a book on that. I believe that is a great new area of research that could have a big impact on notions of gender and transgenderism. I want to talk more about what women’s desire and erotic expression can look like when not performed for the male gaze (which I think Gaga often does perform for it. See – there’s one of my counter-arguments). You have a big fan here.
I am fascinated by your observations of monstrosity in gothic narratives RE: Skin Shows. So much so that I am curious as to your opinions on representations of the undead in popular culture (Romero films, Max Brooks’s World War Z and The Zombie Survival Guide, The Walking Dead, etc.) In many ways, zombies are now a popular expression of the relationship between humans, consumption, and defining the monstrous, the living, and the dead. If this topic is of any interest to you, I would love to hear what your thoughts are on the zombie as a narrative tool.
Hi ALex – i am thinking of writing something about The Walking Dead – I am trying to think through the “we are all infected” paradigm of the show – the idea that we are all already dead…but still walking, that we are in the afterglow of a world that has already collapsed. The zombie seems to represent afterwardness…
are you writing about this?
It was nice meeting you at the Five Leaves Bookshop in Nottingham. I really enjoyed your talk. Great to hear about your new resaerch project and looking forward to reading your new book soon. The Chinese musician-turned-writer I mentoned this evening is Liu Suola (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liu_Sola). Her novella, titled ‘You Have No Choice’, published in Chinese in the 1980s, were highly influential at the time. It explores the impact of (Western) modern music (and modern literature if we consider Liu’s writing style) on young people in China at the time and ‘wildness’ embodies resistant and liberatory potentials. The novella has not been translated into English as far as I know. The following article offers a summary of the novella and Liu’s life: http://www.beijingscene.com/V05I002/feature/feature.htm
Another ‘wild’ Chinese musician/singer who is better known in China is Cui Jian, the ‘father of Chinese Rock’ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cui_Jian). Many of his works are politically subversive and they inspired a generation of rebellious youth. More information: http://www.cuijian.com/. You can find many of his songs on Youtube.
Hope this helps.
I would like to request your email address in order to contact you formally in relation to your availability and interest to support in mi PhD research on “Lesbian practices of The lesbian practices of public acknowledgement in Chile” [“Prácticas lésbicas de reconocimiento público en Chile”].
Roxana Gómez Tapia.-
email me any time!!
Can you recommend any authors who have written about transmaculinity in the same way you have written about female masculinity?
Have you written anything about transmasculinity?
I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed your talk yesterday at UCD in Denver. I was the asshole that had to leave halfway through because my household is down a vehicle right now and my partner had an appointment. I just was absolutely blown away by what you had to say about the objectifying human gaze rendering all that it lands upon into the “living dead.” I cannot wait to look into more of your writings. Thank you again for coming to speak, it made my week.
I wish I had the words to describe how much your book Female Masculinity meant to me… It was really one of the first things I’d come across that made female masculinity and butchness so visible and real without relying on invalidating transexual men. I have to admit, it made me cry. It has/is really helping me articulate something that is so hard to put into words (being…some gender…perhaps like yours?) I appreciate your work so much, you will never know.
With gratitude and admiration,
Jack, I’m only on the second page of Female Masculinity and crying tears of joy to be face-to-face with this text.
Thank you, thank you, thank you. My life is changed forever.
thank you so much!
Hi Professor Halberstam,
A quick question about Gaga Feminism (2012) – the book in print is titled “Gaga Feminism: Sex, Gender, and the End of Normal,” but on your CV it is listed as “Gaga Feminism: Pregnant Men, Heteroflexible Women and The End of Normal.” I was wondering if you decided to change the title for publication or if you were asked to change it? Or if the title on the CV is a mistake? (Apologies for the potential creepiness of this question – I am a PhD student preparing for my qualifying examination and noticed the discrepancy while compiling my reading list!). Just wondering if you experienced any censorship with the title as listed on your CV?!
Thanks so much!
Hmm, which CV are you looking at – the one on this site – probably old. use the title in print – thanks!!
gary snyder – practice of The wild
Thanks for the wonderful lecture at 221a
Thanks – great meeting you and cannot wait to read this!
Hi, jack. I read this article of yours at the “bullybloggers” WordPress blog
and I pretty much agreed with all of it. However, I wrote a comment (under this same screen name) still waiting to be approved that I would rather you deleted rather than approve. Though I agreed with you, I felt I was too salty and dyspeptic in my tone (political correctness really gets under my skin sometimes), and I’m not proud of that. One thing that really bugs me about the PC crowd is their refusal to see beyond their own hurt feelings and personal baggage, and I felt my attitude in that comment repeated that same mistake. Maybe I’ll write another comment that expresses some of the same ideas without all the butthurt. I think WordPress should let people delete comments the way Blogger does.
Hi Jack Halberstam,
I’m a great admirer of your work. I love “The Queer Art of Failure” and I actually just completed my senior project based off of that book. If you’d like to read it, I’d be happy to share it. It’s about “madness and queer failure” and how they disrupt capitalist “business-as-usual.” The Facebook page associated with it is http://www.facebook.com/madfailures if you want to check it out.
Thanks for reading! Best,
Thank you!! Will do…
Jack, I ‘m 9th grader student and I ‘m a man decided my gender.
I ‘ve considered how to explain about LGBT to my future children or every kids.
At this moment, your book giving me lots of helps.
Thank you so much! Have a good day!
Hi Jack, yesterday some friends and I joined a Patti Smith concert. It was the first time I experienced her presence on stage and at the end she said „Don’t forget to use your voice!“ That just hit me … and I rembered a quote in your text „Wildness, Loss, Death“ it’s not just about to have a voice it’s also about to be a voice.
–Jack, you are truly a voice. It’s just like that. You are really on something! Please keep going.–
She also performed „Pissing in the River“ and then suddenly everything was in everything. -Thank you Jack, for inspiring me so much.
I have begun reading your book, In a Queer Time and Place: Transgendered Bodies, Subcultural Lives, after a serendipitous discovery of it online.
I was scouring literary journals and online searches in an attempt to locate “decent” articles regarding gendered, transgendered, and queer studies for a class on Social Problems that I teach at a local community college. Unfortunately, in a field (i.e., psych- and sociology) that has only recently began to make mainstream academia the concept of identity as it relates to gender, it was a disappointing experience.
Then, I found your book. Your work is singularly the most insightful, brilliant, and collective expression of (trans-)gender I have ever read. Sadly, most of the focus in my field (i.e., sociology) has cast aside as fringe theory the conical works of Foucault (et.al.). I thank you for penning this masterfully forged literary piece.
Thank you for this Brent and good luck with the teaching!
Translated in spanish here:
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