Doors. Queer(ed) encounters.
Doors that slowly close.
Doors that slam close.
Doors that are left slightly ajar.
Doors that swing wide open with a burst.
Doors that get a boost of electrical support.
Doors that get locked.
Doors that propel.
Doors that deliver.
Doors always deliver.
I frequently find myself moving in between spaces, programs, paradigms, timescales, (meta)physics, and...and...and.... Sometimes these moments are more formally marked, while others are indicated with the slight gesture only accessible through an affective attunement with the exchange. When these invitations become so overwhelming I know it is time to write-- to find a smooth space--to linger with(in) it all; to queer it all.
Perhaps I’ve always lead a queer(ed) life? As someone who identifies as a cis heternormative woman, it feels a bit odd to write the words (or is it world?) so plainly. While much commonplace conversation around the term ‘queer’ implies a re/figuring of sexuality, there are also many researchers across anthropology, philosophy, feminist science studies, gender studies, envrionmental studies, and, and… and.. (Seymour, 2013; Mortimer-Sandilands & Erickson, 2010; McCann & Monaghan, 2020) who explore ways in which viewing the world through a ‘queer lens’ invites critical possibilities for living well with each other. That is, living collectively with(in) the more-than-human relationships we are always already enveloped.
To queer an idea, a self, a discipline, a concept, a piece of evidence, a tradition is to soften its edges and thus become permeability to the not yet.
To queer something is to make it more hospitable for someone or something to thrive.
Doors are our daily invitation to a queered reality.
I have experienced many slammed doors, and doors that have been thrust open. Most often, however, doors are only left slightly ajar inviting me to ask: Should I send my full self in? Or should I just send a slip of paper with a note? What is at stake? For whom? What is my responsibility to the door? To the spaces on either side of the threshold? To the in-between?
Most recently, doors, their foyers, and their thresholds have afforded me an opportunity to live, teach, breathe, and imagine well with others (again) in a queered space. A space where permeable walls and ideas are celebrated. A space where the queering of epistemology, ontology, and methodology is rendered-possible.
I’m excited to have the opportunity to re/turn to a slow (and thus always-already queer) ontology (Ulmer, 2017).
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A tentative thinker.