Sissies at the Picnic

Reading Matt’s book reminded me of this very brief autobiographical essay by Rod Ferguson called Sissies at the Picnic (sorry for the format, I couldn’t find an electronic version other than photos on a friend’s Facebook page). In this essay Rod is thinking about rural Georgia as a Black queer space in ways that resonate with Matt’s understanding of CSI as a queer college. Also, I think this essay speaks to the question of motherhood in interesting ways. With this essay in mind, I would ask whether Rod is engaged in a practice of poor queer studies from within Yale University, among the most elite institutions of higher education in the world? Here I am thinking with Matt’s argument that “we are of our institutions” and Moten and Harney’s call to be “in but not of” the university. Is it possible to be in Yale but not of it, or to be of both Manchester, Georgia and Yale University—perhaps creating a sense of double consciousness?

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