Queer Transpacifics

What affinities, tensions, and conceptual convergences emerge between “queer” and “transpacific”? How can we (re)conceptualize queerness both transnationally and translocally? What is queer about the transpacific?

We’re Going to Party Like It’s 1989: Proper China, Interdisciplinarity, and the Global Art Market

Hentyle Yapp analyzes contemporary Chinese art as it circulates on the global art market to outline the limitations of Western understandings of non-Western art. Yapp reconsiders the all-too-common narratives about Chinese art that celebrate the heroic artist who embodies political resistance against the authoritarian state. These narratives, as Yapp establishes, prevent Chinese art, aesthetics, and politics from being discussed in the West outside the terms of Western liberalism and notions of the “universal.”

Staying In: Mitski, Ocean Vuong, and Asian American Asociality

Lee considers how the act of staying in, rather than going (or coming) out, gives shape to the racial performativity of Asian American asociality. “Asian American asociality” speaks to how Asian Americans have been racially figured as a problem for and of sociality, as assimilated, yet socially isolated, unrelatable subjects. Asian American asociality is not a refusal of the social, the relational, and the minoritarian world-making possibilities they hold. Instead, it is a means of inhabiting and navigating the social and relational differently to critique the contemporary liberal mandate for minoritarian subjects to be visible and legible. The article examines the music, video, performances, and social media presence of singer-songwriter Mitski and poet and writer Ocean Vuong, whose expressions and articulations of staying in are experimentations with what constitutes the social and relational as such.

Terrifying Drag: Zulfikar Ali Bhutto/Faluda Islam + Kareem Khubchandani/ LaWhore Vagistan

This conversation brings together two US-based South Asian drag queens, Faluda Islam and LaWhore Vagistan, to discuss a broad array of topics connected to the aesthetics of their practices: pastiche as a mode of re-making the world; death as well as conviviality as strategies in drag; camp theory in relation to race and ethnicity; and “queer Muslim futures.” Curated and moderated by Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU, Co-sponsored by the NYU Center for the Study of Gender & Sexuality. 

Missing Things: State Secrets and U.S. Cold War Policy Toward Laos

Charting incomplete U.S. archives from the Cold War made secret through redacted U.S. State documents, Vang shows how Hmong refugees tell their stories in ways that exist separately from narratives of U.S. empire and that cannot be traditionally archived. In so doing, Vang outlines a methodology for writing histories that foreground refugee epistemologies despite systematic attempts to silence those histories. 

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