My Authors
Read all threads
“The task of queer ecology is to probe the intersections of sex and nature with an eye to developing a sexual politics that more clearly includes considerations of the natural world and its biosocial constitution...”
“and an environmental politics that demonstrates an understanding of the ways in which sexual relations organize and influence both the material world of nature and our perceptions, experiences, and constitutions of that world.”
“Queer, then, is both noun and verb in this project: ours is an ecology that may begin in the experiences and perceptions of non-heterosexual individuals and communities, but is even more importantly one that calls into question heteronormativity itself...”
“What do queer interrogations of science, politics, desire then offer to environmental understanding?”
“What does it mean that ideas, spaces, and practices designated as ‘nature’ are often so vigorously defended against queers in a society in which that very nature is increasingly degraded and exploited?”
“One of the most obvious sites in which heteronormativity has influenced ideas and practices of natural space is in parks, both wilderness and urban...”
“The naturalization of...heterosexuality in the midst of a perceived proliferation of deviant sexual types...began, in the mid-late 19th cent., to create social anxiety about the state of white...masculinity, & the park movement was heavily influenced by a desire to shore it up.”
“Parks were a curative response: with clear biopolitical overtones, they were created in part as places in which heterosexual masculinity could be performed and solidified away from the dramatic upheavals of American social and economic transformation...”
“There is an assumption that homosexuality is a product of the urban, and that rural and wilderness spaces are thus somehow free from the taint of homoerotic activity. Nothing, in fact, could be further from the truth.”
“Parks were places to see and be seen; they were sites for public spectacle of a particular kind, including the conspicuous display of middle-class respectability and wealth.”
“Queer ecology suggests...a new practice of ecological knowledges, spaces, and politics that places central attention on challenging hetero-ecologies from the perspective of non-normative sexual and gender positions.”
“Gay men, lesbians, and others identified as ‘against nature’ have historically used ideas of nature, natural spaces, and ecological practices as sites of resistance and exploration.”
“One can consider public gay sex as a democratization of natural space, in which different communities can experience the park in their own ways, and in which a wider range of natural experiences thus comes to be possible.”
“‘Queering ecology’ involves the opening up of environmental understanding to explicitly non-heterosexual forms of relationship, experience, and imagination as a way of transforming entrenched sexual and natural practices toward simultaneously queer and environmental ends.”
“Scrutinizing and politicizing the intersections between sex and nature not only opens environmentalism to a wider understanding of justice, but also deploys anti-heteronormative insistences of queer politics to potentially more biophilic ends.”
Language Check!

Heteronormative: Image
Language check!

Biophilic: Image
“Queer ecology involves a necessary critique of the heteronormativity and whiteness of environmental politics.”
“The trouble with wilderness, as William Cronon...suggests, is that it presents a political agenda based upon our image of wilderness, a dated, racist, gendered, and sexualized wilderness.”
“The task of clarifying a new politic in which...political activists will not be typecast expectantly into heterosexual family units deals with building new understandings of the spaces of environmental practice.”
“The recognition of queer ecologies is built upon the understanding that these alternative cultures of nature have been ongoing throughout both the environmental movement and gay and lesbian history.”
“The volume points to an ecology that embraces deviation & strangeness as a necessary part of biophilia, sexual pleasure & transgression as foundational to env. ethics & politics, & resistance to heteronormativity as part & parcel of ecological science and green strategy.”
“Against the commodification of nature as resource and as spectacle, and also against the fetishization of lgbtq consumerist lifestyles, Queer Ecologies argues for a perspective based on mobilization of queer perspectives and politics...toward radical ecological ends.”
“‘Nature’ and the ‘natural’ have long been waged against homosexuals, as well as women, people of color, and indigenous peoples.”
“Much queer theory has bracketed, expelled, or distanced the volatile categories of nature and the natural, situating queer desire within an entirely social, and very human, habitat.”
“This now compulsory sort of segregation of queer from nature is hardly appealing to those who seek queer green places, or, in other words, an environmentalism allied with gay affirmation, and a gay politics that is also environmentalist.”
“Notwithstanding the sheer delight of dwelling within a queer bestiary that supplants the dusty, heteronormative Book of Nature, the recognition of the sexual diversity of animals has several significant benefits.”
“Most obviously, scientific accounts of queer animals insist that heteronormativity has damaged and diminished scientific knowledge in biology, anthropology, and other fields.”
“From a cultural studies perspective that focuses on discursive contestation, it is easy to see queer animals as countering the pernicious and persistent articulation of homosexuality with what is unnatural.”
“But is possible, I think, to look to queer animals, not as moral code or embodiment of some static universal law, but in order to find, in this astounding exuberance, a sense of vast diversity, deviance...that make nonsense of biological reductionism.”
“Many people have witnessed some sort of same-sex activity between animals and yet still imagine the natural world as unrelentingly straight. Such determined ignorance emerges from a heteronormative epistemology.”
Language check!

Epistemology: Image
“Environmentalists and queers can engage with accounts of the sexual diversity of animals, allowing them to complicate, challenge, enrich, and transform our conceptions of nature, culture, sex, gender, and other fundamental categories.”
“Sex, in non-humans as well as humans, is partly a learned, social behavior, embedded within and contributing to particular material-social environments.”
“Should queer people use arguments based on the presumed value of diversity in our political endeavors?”
“A major lesson to be learned from this look at the concept ‘species’ is that science has not demonstrated that it merits the authority often given it to decide social, political, and moral questions.”
“If sexual and gender diversity are valuable in human society, they are so regardless of their value for species preservation or evolution.”
“Right-wing fundamentalist Christians adopted [The March of the Penguins] as an inspiring example of monogamy, traditional Christian family values, and intelligent design. At the same time...penguins had become a symbol of the naturalness of gay marriage.”
“Meanwhile, in other political and cultural discourses, penguins (along with polar bears) became popular symbols of what we would lose to global warming.”
“What is the connection between these popular cultural trends? Does it matter in terms of environmental consequences what kind of familial and sexual arrangements we make?”
“The politics of reproduction—of people, families, economies, and environments—centers around gendered arrangements of work and sexuality, recognizing this politic is important in coming up with solutions to social and environmental problems...”
The nuclear family form, “especially when located within a suburban, consumer economy dependent on extremes of global inequality, might be an important origin of our present environmental problems...”
“When such heteronormative family forms are bound up In environmentally dangerous social & economic practices, we have a situation in which we are promoting environmental damage by naturalizing heteronormative patriarchy, preventing us from imagining” alternative ways of living.”
“This, resisting and/or critically evaluating claims to the natural is an essential method of enabling people to consciously create better, more environmentally sound, and more socially just arrangements of work and life.”
“Responsibility to these ecological niches, networks, and dynamics can be brought into view only if we understand ourselves as animals among other animals, with varied sexualities, complicated family relationships, complex political systems, and multiple desires.”
“In this chapter, I want to think about what Jeffrey Weeks calls ‘the nature of our natures’ by considering three particular articulations of the nature of sex and the sex of nature: eco-porn, queer animals, and naturism.”
“Is sex nature or culture?”

“The very idea of nature itself is not natural; nature is cultural...’Naturecultures’ [also] reminds us that nature has cultures; culture is natural.”
“In Euroamerican-dominant cultural contexts, two kinds of sex have been (are) said to be toxic to nature: reproductive sex between non-white people, and sex between men.”
“Although overpopulation propaganda...and the criminalization and policing of sexual acts between men have been generally treated as distinct phenomena, their genealogies are intimately interwoven through the projects of colonialism, development, and nation building.”
“Read against the heterosexist, racialized formations of nature engendered through these projects...heterosexual, potentially reproductive sex between non-white people and homosexual sex, I argue, threaten colonial-imperialist & nationalist ambitions.”
“Both are ‘queer acts’ in that they challenge the stated norms of collaborating colonial narratives of race, sex, and gender, through which modern formations of nature have been constituted.”
“Malthus spent nearly his whole life working for the East India Company, and it was his aversion to the sexual habits of Indians that fuelled his rhetoric on overpopulation.”
Language Check!

Malthus:… Image
“A necessary component of this characterization of homosexuality and non-white reproductive sexuality as dangerous and damaging to ecology is the denial of the pleasures they bring.”
“Through my characterization of ‘non-white reproduction’ as queer sex, I am trying to raise three sets of related concerns:”
1. “First, a concern about the political geography of queer ecology: Is the production of ‘queer ecology’ a decidedly Euroamerican project?”
2. “Second, a concern about race racism: If queer ecology is to maintain a primary gaze on the production of nature in Euroamerican contexts...what becomes of race racism?”
3. Image
This essay “examines the role of place in the history of American lesbians, particularly the role of nonhuman nature in the alternative environments lesbians created & nurtured in their efforts to transcend the sexism, homophobia, violence [etc.] afflicting mainstream society.”
“Lesbians’ ways of incorporating nonhuman nature into their temporary and permanent communities demonstrate how members of an oppressed minority created safe havens and spaces to be themselves.”
“In addition to offering mainstream society insight into the impact of place on identity, in some instances lesbian communities also provide some important working examples of alternate ways of living on and with the land.”
“In environmental studies, the term ecology—whose root comes from the Greek oikos, meaning an inhabited house or household—describes the web of relationships and interconnections among organisms and their ‘homes.’”
“Thinking of the body as a home/ecology, especially in consideration of those bodies, communities, & environments that have been reviled, neglected, & polluted, provides an apt metaphor and material grounding for constructing an embodied ecological politics...”
“In this chapter, I discuss how the dominant anti-toxics discourse deployed in mainstream environmentalism adopts the potent rhetoric that toxic chemical pollution is responsible for the undermining or perversion of the’natural.’”
“What are presented by environmentalists as critical scientific (and quite rightly worthy of alarm) can, however, work to create a ‘sex panic,’ resuscitating familiar heterosexist, queerphobic, and eugenics arguments classifying some bodies as being not normal...”
“In short, this unexamined toxic discourse produces ‘polluted politics’ even while claiming to stand for diversity and justice.”
“The denunciation of queers as ‘unnatural’ and as ‘crimes against nature’ has a long history that continues to endanger queer lives and complicate queer environmental desires.”
“A queer ecocritique is a powerful contribution to ecocriticism and environmental justice theory and activism; it keeps the focus on how the seemingly innocent realm of nature and ecological protection is potentially rife with ideology and violence.”
Language Check!

Ecocritism: Image
Language check!

Environmental Justice: Image
“Eugenics and environmentalism, while not one and the same, have been historically linked as projects that operate in tandem, rather than in opposition, and often in terms of the unfit and unnatural.”
“Queer critical interventions into such uses of nature & environment expose the dark purposes to which nature & environmentalism can be put. Disrupting, challenging, & undermining normative ideas of what counts as naturally fit & unfit is the primary emphasis.”
“Gender, race, sexuality, religion, physical ability, and class figure prominently in who is assumed to belong in nature and who is not, who has safe access to nature and who does not.”
“This chapter re-examines the environmental context of the formation of one so-called gay ghetto, Vancouver’s West End, and explores more nuanced, spatial, and materialist means of describing social processes involving sexual minorities across metropolitan areas.”
“Through revisiting...materialist frameworks, such as landscape ecology’s notions of fragments, edges & matrices, I hope to build a theoretical bridge to better blend biophysical & empirical descriptors in investigations of social networks & physical sites of sexual minorities..”
“The central argument of this chapter is that landscape ecology holds some theoretical and methodological tools that can be adapted to understanding material aspects of queer urbanization...”
“Ideas, including ones that are key ingredients for sexual culture, lead to the transformation of urban spaces just as biophysical environments can foster certain experiences and ideologies.”
“My underlying argument in this chapter is that over and above political economic forces, these neighborhood spaces were successfully claimed and eventually queered because of material conditions associated with the urban landscape ecology.”
“Queer ecology as a fusion of the science of biological exuberance with some cultural studies and urban planning could provide a basis to reconstruct landscape ecology to help us better see, enjoy, and, when necessary, defend all that we love in the communities in which we live.”
West Vancouver Pride…
"Sexuality and the City: Exploring gaybourhoods and the urban village form in Vancouver, BC"…
Landscape Ecology Vignette #1 -- Theory…
“Adrienne Rich and Minnie Bruce Pratt are contemporary U.S. lesbian feminist poets whose work overtly challenges many sorts of social inequalities and exclusions, including heterosexism, which rests upon the formulation of homosexuality as a crime against nature.”
“Both poets expose how this discourse of unnatural sex dislocates lesbians from the socio-natural order by framing homosexuals as societal pariahs and felons who are then excluded from social spaces and endangered within natural terrains.”
“Adrienne Rich’s ‘Your Native Land, Your Life’ (1986b) and Minnie Bruce Pratt’s Crimes Against Nature (1990) were written during the 1980s, a period of political retrenchment and renewed conservative antagonism to homosexuality.”
“The failure of canoe-sex within Canadian nationalism suggests a failure that connects sexuality, nature, and race to the future existence of the state.”
“In my exploration of these connections, I move through three modes of understanding Berton’s statement: the modes of Nation, Land, and Possibility.”
“Identity, specifically national identity, is made into an active part of the biopolitical frame of the nation, such that identity becomes another form of labor that is focused upon normalizing and controlling bodies and pleasures.”
“The myth of the canoe in Canada celebrates an image of the landscape as the justification for the establishment of the nation.”
The attachment between canoeist and the nation of Canada “is generated at the level of landscape, creating powerful feelings for spaces of wilderness and the people that are in it, and then generalized outward to the state and myth that protects the land of canoeing.”
“Focusing specifically on the case of the canoe in Canada, we can see that our leisure patterns are held within a desire for the nation that ultimately reproduces heterosexist and masculinist naturalization of the nation.”
“There is in late capitalist nature relations a patina of nature-nostalgia in place of any kind of active negotiation of environmental mourning.”
“Melancholia, a state of suspended mourning in which the object of loss is very real but psychically ‘ungrievable’ within the confines of a society that cannot acknowledge nonhuman beings, natural environments, and ecological processes as appropriate objects for genuine grief.”
“In late capitalism, I would argue, nature nostalgia—[ecotourism, documentaries of dying places, certain environmentalist campaigns]—are exactly a form of melancholy nature, in that they incorporate environmental destruction into the ongoing workings of commodity capitalism.”
“This essay will consider two literary works that specifically engage a politicized melancholic sensibility drawn from lesbian and gay experiences of AIDS to rethink commodified late capitalist nature relations...”
#1 Image
#2 Image
“The idea of pristine nature on the perpetual verge of destruction is not only a violent rationale for the dispossession of peoples and livelihoods but a seductive fantasy that keeps consumers poised to watch that destruction.”
“There is lots of evidence of environmental loss, but few places in which to experience it as loss, to even begin to consider that the diminish meant of life that surrounds us on a daily basis is something to be really sad about, and on a personal level.”
“In a context in which certain lives are considered ungrievable—here, including both non-heterosexual & more-than-human relationships—melancholia represents a holding-on to loss in defiance of bourgeois (& capitalist) imperatives to forget, move on, [and] transfer attention...”
“In Ellen Meloy’s seriously quirky writing of the desert southwest, the linking of affections & affiliations across species lines are more than idiosyncratically queer. She uses ecologist E.O. Wilson’s “biophilia” hypothesis as a method of cognitive adventuring info...symbiosis.”
Ellen Maloy Image
“What makes Meloy’s nature writing queer is not an express allegiance to minority sexuality but a creative and attentive naturalism that tracks interspecies couplings across the desert’s vital landscape on a map of co-adaptation, which standard ecosite to chart.”
@threadreaderapp unroll please
Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh.

Enjoying this thread?

Keep Current with Dr. Jessica DeWitt

Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!