Queer in Black and White

Queer in Black and White

Interraciality, Same Sex Desire, and Contemporary African American Culture
Stefanie K. Dunning
Distribution: World
Publication date: 4/21/2009
Format: paper 152 pages, 5 b&w photos
5.5 x 8.25
ISBN: 978-0-253-22109-4
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This book analyzes representative works of African American fiction, film, and music in which interracial desire appears in the context of same sex desire. In close readings of these "texts," Stefanie K. Dunning explores the ways in which the interracial intersects with queerness, blackness, whiteness, class, and black national identity. She shows that representations of interracial desire do not follow the logic of racial exclusion. Instead they are metaphorical and anti-biological. Rather than diluting race, interracial desire makes race visible. By invoking the interracial, black gay and lesbian artists can remake our conception of blackness.

Author Bio

Stefanie K. Dunning is Associate Professor of English at Miami University of Ohio.


"Dunning uses the trope of interraciality . . . to demonstrate how [it] actually reifies rather than obfuscates the black queer's 'blackness'." —E. Patrick Johnson, Northwestern University

"Queer studies has been disproportionately 'white' and androcentric. . . . Dunning's book helps fill this lacuna. . . . Her prose is concise, cogent, and readable." —LaShonda Barnett, Sarah Lawrence College

". . . an intellectual illustration challenging the notion that the black queer is 'not black enough' and both examines and explains 'the frequent representation of the interracial as a device signifying the ideas of nation, authenticity and blackness.'" —Brandon Copeland,
Feminist Review , Oct. 17, 2009

"Dunning's text is beneficial to any scholar whose research explores race, gender, and sexuality." —
MELUS , Vol. 35, No. 3, Fall 2010

"The small paperback, light on jargon and devoid of pretension, is eminently readable, permitting Dunning's ideas to transmit fluidly across multifarious dsciplines and research interests in the arts and humanities." —Benjamin Grimwood,
Black Camera

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Table of Contents


1. "Ironic Soil": Recuperative Rhythms and Negotiated Nationalism
2. "No Tender Mercy": Same-Sex Desire, Interraciality, and the Black Nation
3. (Not) Loving Her: A Locus of Contradictions
4. "She's a B*(u)tch": Centering Blackness in
The Watermelon Woman
Epilogue: Reading Robert Reid-Pharr

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