Those who cannot perform normative cultural narratives often find their voices silenced. Queer Theory offers us a new framework – a new way for working with old material. To queer an experience is to resist defining it. Queerness is not reducible to the convenience of definition. In our inquiries, we are listening for what we find resonant with our personal or clinical experience and for what makes us squirm, wish to turn away, or shut down, for herein lies our treasure. Connections will be made between ideas from Queer Theory and the Jungian concepts of individuation, complex theory, Weltanschauung, and active imagination.
In the first class, we will begin our exploration of the intersections between Queer Theory and a Jungian analytical frame, as articulated by Lee Edelman in No Future: Queer Theory and the Death Drive.
We will follow this in the second class with a discussion of our understandings of power, hierarchy, kinship, libido, and the costs of “standing outside” of the normative, as well as the necessity of doing so if we are to be conscious of our unique relationship to and within Psyche. Our text for this class will be Judith Butler’s Antigone’s Claim: Kinship Between Life and Death.
Next, we will address complexes at the individual and cultural levels and how individuation necessitates a continual struggle in this realm of the Psyche. We will connect Jungian ideas that pertain to working with complexes with the ideas of Queer theorist Sara Ahmed, as articulated in her book, Queer Phenomenology: Orientations, Objects, Others.
In the fourth and last class, we will try to synthesize what has been unfolding for by working with fairy tales from a Queer Energy perspective. We will hold an open discussion of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Steadfast Tin Soldier, Angela Chambers’ The Lady of the House of Love, and Oscar Wilde’s The Happy Prince.
A complete list of readings and an expanded look at what we’ll discuss in each class will be sent to participants upon registration.