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Queering Taiwan Studies
Organized by Shu-mei Shih (Edward W. Said Professor of Comparative Literature, Asian Languages and Cultures, and Asian American Studies, UCLA) and Howard Chiang (Associate Professor of History, UC Davis) This conference is presented as part of the UCLA-NTNU Taiwan Studies Initiative, a partnership of UCLA and National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) that aims to create research synergies to promote cutting-edge research in Taiwan studies. Ku'er, the Madaring transliteration of the English word "queer," has a distinctly Taiwanese genealogy, as implied in the homophonic meaning of being "cool." This conference examines the interrelationships between queer studies and Taiwan studies, from placing Taiwanese history and culture on the map of queer inquiry to the queering of Taiwan studies. Does queer Taiwan studies mean a focus on queer content, or is "queering" a method that can be used in studying any content in Taiwan studies? In light of the emergence of queer indigenous studies and queer of color critique in North America, how might we consider the question of indigeneity, race, and ethnicity in queering Taiwan studies? Ultimately, what can a focus on Taiwan do to exceed the existing limits of queer theory, and how might the method of queering advance the transgressive potential of Taiwan studies?
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