Queering Narrative

As I am beginning to read Judith Roof’s Come As You Are I am thinking about the Eng reading we did, and some of the discussion we had in class around heteronormativity and homonormativity. Something that stuck with me from last class was our discussion around the narrative that sexual encounters are predicated on the assumption that people are looking for a relationship that leads to marriage/children, and how this leads to the idea that a relationship is considered a failure when those things don’t happen. It seems like Roof’s piece ties into this when it talks about narrative needing an ending to make sense. Roof writes “without the expectation of an ending, we have difficulty discerning a story, its pleasures, terrors, lessons, its making sense of things,” I think that radical queerness that critiques marriage disrupts the expected narrative arc, making the lives of queer people (their ‘pleasures, terrors, ways of making sense of things’) more difficult to be read and controlled by the patriarchy.  I’m also thinking about my own approach to intimacy, and the things that I have been taught to value in my relationships. I am really interested in thinking more about the ways that we talk about and value different kinds of relationships, and the language we use around relationships and intimacy. I think it is useful to think about narrative to do this, and I’m excited to read more of the Roof piece.

One thought on “Queering Narrative

  1. Thank you for your post. As you point out, there is an assumption in our society that relationships should ultimately end with marriage/children, and anything outside of this is seen as a failure. We also put a value on the different types of relationships, with the assumption that the relationship with your sexual partner is the most important. I think we both agree that these ideas of ‘success’ can be destructive, but I’d be interested to hear thoughts about what the alternative could be. What does true success look like? Is that attainable for queer individuals?

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