“Gay, Inc.: The Nonprofitization of Queer Politics” by Myrl Beam— The Nonprofit Structure

Beam, Myrl. “Gay, Inc.: The Nonprofitization of Queer Politics”, University of Minnesota Press, 2018.

The Nonprofit Structure

Amos Lassen

Writer Myrl Beam gives us a bold and provocative look at how the nonprofit sphere’s expansion has both helped and hindered the LGBT cause. She argues that the conservative turn in queer movement politics is due mostly to the movement’s embrace of the nonprofit structure. Through oral histories, archival research, and her own extensive activist work, “Gay, Inc.” looks at how LGBT nonprofits in Minneapolis and Chicago deal with the contradictions between radical queer social movements and their institutionalized purposes.

Beam outlines the” emotionally compelling but politically compromising role of nonprofit organizations in LGBTQ life.” We see the conflicts between mission and fundraising, between participants and donors that influence our commitments to social justice. This is the book to read to find out how social change works. “Gay, Inc.” helps us understand queer and trans resistance in and brings new insight into social movement debates about the role of nonprofits using grounded histories of resistance and conflict within queer politics.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Neoliberalism, Nonprofitization, and Social Change
  • The Work of Compassion: Institutionalizing Affective Economies of AIDS and Homelessness
  • Community and Its Others: Safety, Space, and Nonprofitization
  • Capital and Nonprofitization: At the Limits of “By and For”
  • Navigating the Crisis of Neoliberalism: A Stance of Undefeated Despair
  • Conclusion
  • Acknowledgments
  • Notes
  • Index

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