e-flux journal #44

Creative commons CC BY-NC-SA (Reconocimiento/NoComercial/CompartirIgual) Libro, publicado en papel o digital. En Listas compartidas
2013 / e-flux

Carlos Motta
Editorial—“(Im)practical (Im)possibilities”

Beatriz Preciado
Testo Junkie: Sex, Drugs, and Biopolitics

When I take a dose of testosterone in gel form or inject it in liquid form, what I’m actually giving myself is a chain of political signifiers that have been materialized in order to acquire the form of a molecule that can be absorbed by my body. I’m not only taking the hormone, the molecule, but also the concept of a hormone, a series of signs, texts, and discourses, the process through which the hormone came to be synthesized, the technical sequences that produce it in the laboratory.

Jack Halberstam
Charming for the Revolution: A Gaga Manifesto

But is that all there is? Slow death, bare life, sexual capital? What else can the wild bring us? Does anything escape these forms of living and dying? Berlant hints towards alternatives throughout her book, countering exhaustion with “counter/absorption,” globalization with anarchy. Wild theory lives in these spaces of potentiality even as institutionalization seeks to blot it out.

Miguel A. López
Queer Corpses: Grupo Chaclacayo and the Image of Death

It is no coincidence that the emergence of Grupo Chaclacayo paralleled the appearance of an unprecedented countercultural and alternative cultural scene in Lima between 1982 and the early 1990s, known as the “subte” [underground] movement. These disruptive practices took the form of collective experiences at the intersection of rock and punk, ephemeral and precarious self-constructed architecture, DIY fanzines, anarchist movements, junk aesthetics, scum poetry, and shock theatre.

Virginia Solomon
What is Love?: Queer Subcultures and the Political Present

Once again—as the Berkeley youth did, and General Idea did, according to Bronson—we face a failure of traditional politics. As such, Hayes, LTTR, and Ridykeulous, not to mention many of the other artists who constitute their cohort, offer a politics of the present, highlighting how their queer subcultures create alternative social and economic orders now, however ephemeral they may be, while also working towards more traditionally recognizable forms of social justice.

Greg Youmans
Living on the Edge: Recent Queer Film and Video in the San Francisco Bay Area

It strikes me that multiple takes are antithetical to both of these currents within queer filmmaking. In relation to the first, magical spells don’t get do-overs: the “ordinary” person must commit one hundred percent to the ritual transformation; they must take the risk and make the leap. And in relation to the second, already magical people shouldn’t require them. In other words, the need for multiple takes calls into question the validity of either the word, in the first instance, or the spirit, in the second.

Ryan Conrad
The Defiant Prose of Sarah Schulman

By the time I wrote The Gentrification of the Mind in 2012, it was clear to me that the goal of changing society has been replaced by society changing us. The outcome of this change is that queer people are tolerated only to the degree that we reflect dominant cultural values. Awareness and consciousness of these trajectories is essential to understanding why we are where we are. It is true that we live in a culture that falsely naturalizes events. When gentrification first started, we were told that it was a natural evolution. Now we understand that it was a deliberate policy.

Malik Gaines
A Defense of Marriage Act: Notes on the Social Performance of Queer Ambivalence

The first queer couple I knew who got married were a trans-woman and trans-man whose official state documents denied their gender identities but depicted them as an opposite-sex couple, allowing them to marry. This arrangement worked for them, particularly when one of the two tragically passed away and the other, her legally recognized spouse, was empowered to tend to various details. These practical matters are no small thing in the real lives of real people.

Nathan Lee

Undetectability is founded on this queer coexistence, a constitutive indeterminacy. The virus, if no longer the catalyst for a lethal syndrome, was and remains a central problem of the gay male body. It inhabits both the infected as reality and the uninfected as potential. Drugs have curtailed its lethality but not its ubiquity, and the long-term effects of combination therapies, which continue to evolve, are an open question. We know that AIDS is not what it was, but we’re not at all sure what it has become.

Antke Engel and Renate Lorenz
Toxic Assemblages, Queer Socialities: A Dialogue of Mutual Poisoning

A curious communication between doubled images takes place, since the drag queen on stage as well as a punk figure now appearing there are the same figures portrayed in the projected slides. The punk appears in a cut denim vest, cheeky samurai-style hair tuft, and colorful makeup emphasizing the dark glitter eye shadow. Positioned in front of the photographs, curious doublings and overlappings are created as the punk recites a list of all the toxic substances that come to mind.

Gregg Bordowitz