Date of Award

5-8-2020

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

African-American Studies

First Advisor

Lia Bascomb

Second Advisor

Juliana Kubala

Third Advisor

Tiffany King

Abstract

In accordance with traditional Western cultural logics that undervalue experiences of pleasure, empirical studies that explore the ways in which marginalized communities engage with pleasure often postulate such interplay as in need of scrupulous regulation. Specifically, traditional scholarship examining Black queer people’s pursuit of pleasure tends to wed pleasure to lust or addiction in order to emphasize pleasure as intractable and ultimately corrosive. In contrast to the aforementioned pattern of engagement, this study will build upon diverging pedagogies of pleasure by examining Black genderqueer people’s exhibition of pleasure on the platform of Instagram. Emerging from a lineage of pleasure activists, this research locates itself within geographies of discourse that germinate from Audre Lorde and center pleasure to illustrate collective liberation as not only urgent, but transformatively tasty.

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