“Unruly Visions: The Aesthetic Practices of Queer Diaspora” by Gayatri Gopinath— Affect, Archive, Region and Aesthetics

Gopinath, Gayatri. “Unruly Visions: The Aesthetic Practices of Queer Diaspora”, Duke University Press, 2018.

Affect, Archive, Region and Aesthetics

Amos Lassen

 Gayatri Gopinath brings queer studies to looking at investigations of diaspora and visuality and traces the interrelation of affect, archive, region, and aesthetics through an examination of a wide range of contemporary queer visual culture. She includes film, fine art, poetry, and photography and conceptualizes aesthetic practices of queer diaspora showing the intimacies of seemingly disparate histories of (post)colonial residence and displacement as a product of diasporic trajectories.

Ignoring “standard formulations of diaspora that inevitably foreground the nation-state, as well as familiar formulations of queerness that ignore regional gender and sexual formations”, she sets up unexpected encounters between works by South Asian, Middle Eastern, African, Australian, and Latinx artists (Tracey Moffatt, Akram Zaatari, and Allan deSouza). She shows how their art functions as regional queer archives that express alternative understandings of time, space, and relationality and provides “new critical perspectives on settler colonialism, empire, military occupation, racialization, and diasporic dislocation as they indelibly mark both bodies and landscapes.”

We see new cartographies of diasporic connections that provide a fresh look of our understanding of settler colonialism, empire, and racialization. This is a detailed examination of queer diasporic films and visual art projects that show how critical regionalism can interrupt conventional conceptions of local/global and metropolis/diaspora distinctions.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments  ix

Introduction. Archive, Region, Affect, Aesthetics  1

  1. Queer Regions: Imagining Kerala from the Diaspora  19
  2. Queer Disorientations, States of Suspension  59
  3. Diaspora, Indigeneity, Queer Critique  87
  4. Archive, Affect, and the Everyday  125

Epilogue. Crossed Eyes: Toward a Queer-Sighted Vision  169

Notes  177

Bibliography  213

Index  217

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