Academic Absurdity of All Time?

I’ve pretty much retired the occasional series on “the academic absurdity of the week” because it was just too easy. Ridiculous academic articles are not even a dime a dozen; they produce them for free, but not even a toilet paper shortage will increase consumer interest or demand.

But now and then there is an effort so superlative that it deserves wider notice. Such as the Fall 2019 issue of Middle East Critique, which is an online journal in the increasingly laughable Taylor & Francis stable of online journals. The Fall issue of MEC was a “special issue” devoted to the subject—and I’m not making this up—of “Queering the Middle East.”

And this is the standout article of the issue by far, from Walaa Alqaisiya of the London School of Economics:

Palestine and the Will to Theorise Decolonial Queering

Abstract

This article posits a theorisation of decolonisation in relation to queer as it emerges from the settler-colonial context of Palestine, what I call decolonial queering. The first part provides a new reading of Zionist settler-colonialism, which I define as hetero-conquest. Its novelty lies in refocusing the question of colonialism in native grounded knowledge of queering, while showing the limitations of those existing studies whose frames emanate mainly from American and/or global north contexts of racism and homo-nationalism. By tracing the contemporary continuity of hetero-conquest in Palestine, the second part unpacks the need for a radical theory of liberation that weaves decolonization into queer. Bringing Sara Ahmed and Frantz Fanon into dialogue, such a theory emanates from the amalgam of histories, geographies and bodies, whose restoration beyond the strictures of hetero-conquest opens the way for a radical multi-scalar politics of liberation.

The complete text of the article can be yours for a mere $44. Or you can download the whole issue for $255, and enjoy such other article gems as:

Duffs and Puffs: Queer Fashion in Iranian Cyberspace

Queer/Humanitarian Visibility: The Emergence of the Figure of The Suffering Syrian Gay Refugee

Who is “Queerer” and Deserves Resettlement?: Queer Asylum Seekers and Their Deservingness of Refugee Status in Turkey

This makes the “1619 Project” look lucid and plausible by comparison.

(Hat tip: JD)

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