Course Catalogue

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Course Catalogue WS 2023/24

Queer Trauma

Theory seminar
SoSe 22
Target group
Main course / Diploma 2

Please register until March 10th (limited seats):

Dates - place & time

06.04.2213.07.22MittwochWöchentlich14:00 - 16:00Filzengraben 8-10, Seminarraum KMW, 2.04
from-to14:00 - 16:00
LocationFilzengraben 8-10, Seminarraum KMW, 2.04

Seminar description

Queer Theory has for a long time been interested in trauma: The mass death event of the Aids crisis, heterosexist violence, incest and rape etc. Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore, for example, just recently reminded us that Generation X queers »came of age in the midst of the epidemic with the belief that desire intrinsically led to death, internalizing this trauma as part of becoming queer«. Queer Theory's engagement with trauma was most often deeply – though not always successfully – antipathological, focused on collective experiences, and negative feelings were seen as – as Ann Cvetkovich puts it – »a positive source for political action rather than its antithesis«. Current queer popular culture has adapted the vocabulary of trauma theory with its triggers and flashbacks etc., but seems to have abandoned this focus on collective experiences as potential driving forces of political action.

Today's queer trauma often seems to be individualized, and disconnected from calls for political action or if at all predominantly connected to action within the framework of bourgeois logics of charity. As Queer theorist Yasmin Nair observes, queer trauma seems to have become an identity, a confessional practice, a prerequisite to getting heard and the traumatized subject itself might be the perfect neoliberal subject.

In the seminar we will explore different concepts and critiques of queer trauma and we will try to develop research questions for projects related to queerness and trauma. The seminar is a research seminar, so ideally you have some experience reading and analyzing theoretical texts. Languages: English, German, Dinglish

Student office

Karin Cordes

Juliane Schwibbert

Katrin Seiniger

Claudia Warnecke

Heumarkt 14

50667 Köln

Tel.: +49 221 20189 - 194 /

119 / 187 / 249

Opening hours: Mondays + Tuesdays from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. and Thursdays from 10 a.m.    -    4 p.m.

For enquiries or appointments, please call us, Mon - Thu 9.30 to 1 p.m., or send us an e-mail.

Summer semester 2024

Lecture period:
​​​​​​​Apr. 8, 2024 until Jul. 19, 2024

Winter semester 2024/25

Lecture period:
​​​​​​​Oct. 21, 2024 until Feb. 14, 2025

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