Oct. 21 Curriculum

Melissa Sanchez (Penn, English/GSWS/FQTC): Queer Faith: Reading Promiscuity and Race in the Secular Love Tradition
Melissa E. Sanchez
Oct 21, 2021 at - | Cohen Hall 204

Putting premodern theology and poetry in dialogue with contemporary theory and politics, Melissa E. Sanchez’s Queer Faith reassesses the commonplace view that a modern veneration of sexual monogamy and fidelity finds its roots in Protestant thought. What if this narrative of “history and tradition” suppresses the queerness of its own foundational texts? In this talk, Sanchez works through material from her book to show that writing assumed to promote fidelity in fact articulates the affordances of promiscuity, both in its sexual sense and in its larger designation of all that is impure and disorderly. At the same time, Melissa E. Sanchez resists casting promiscuity as the ethical, queer alternative to monogamy, tracing instead how ideals of sexual liberation are themselves attached to nascent racial and economic hierarchies.