Fall 2024

Queer Narratives: LGBTQ Literature

Listed in: English, as ENGL-259


Frank Leon Roberts (Section 01)


This course is a survey of U.S. LGBTQ literature, culture, and media in the fifty-five years since the landmark 1969 Stonewall Rebellions (widely acknowledged as the “birth” of the modern U.S. LGBTQ human rights/civil rights movement). Our exploration of queer narratives will take two tracks. We will trace a variety of cultural “narratives” associated with LGBTQ+ identities and experiences, including narratives of resistance, transness, coming out/inviting in, fabulosity, dis/ease, exile, butch/femme subjectivities and more. We will also engage longstanding and foundational debates within the field of queer theory about the value of approaching “queerness” as a broad conceptual framework that extends beyond configurations of same-sex desire. Embracing an interdisciplinary approach, we will study classic novels such as James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room and Leslie Feinberg’s Stonebutch Blues; films such as United in Anger: A History of ACT UP and The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson; television shows such as Pose and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy; autobiographical memoirs such as Audre Lorde’s Zami and Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous; musical albums such as Lil Nas X’s Montero, plays such as The Tectonic Theater Project’s The Laramie Project and experimental visual/performance art by artists such as Keith Haring, Wu Tsang, Boychild, and the House of Garcon. Course requirements will include a seven page midterm paper, a ten to twelve page final, weekly journal posts, and a twenty minute group presentation. 

Limited to 29 students. Fall semester. Professor Roberts.

How to handle overenrollment: Preference given to English majors

Students who enroll in this course will likely encounter and be expected to engage in the following intellectual skills, modes of learning, and assessment: Weekly journal entries, readings, oral presentations, active in-class verbal participation, group work, field work or trips, visual analysis, aural analysis, performance analysis, and literary studies.

Course Materials


2023-24: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2016, Fall 2024