Queer Studies

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Queer Studies

QS Statement of Solidarity with Black Lives Matter

The Queer Studies Program stands in solidarity with Black Lives Matter, and with protestors nationwide who have taken to the streets to demand justice in the face of a white supremacist system that has killed African Americans with impunity for too long. We know only too well the ongoing state violence against LGBTQ+ communities, and trans people in particular, as evidenced by the murder of Tony McDade, a black trans man killed by police on the streets of Tallahassee, Florida on May 28th, 2020. We grieve his loss alongside the brutal killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and so many others that have unceasingly revealed the fatal realities of this country’s justice system.

June is Pride Month, marking the Stonewall uprising in June 1969, which was led by trans women of color standing up to police brutality. Their protests set off a national movement for equality. LGBTQ+ people of all races have had a history of fighting for our right to exist, to be treated equally and to challenge oppressive systems in all forms. The Queer Studies Program denounces historical instances of racism within the LGBTQ+ community and is continually working towards teaching from an anti-racist paradigm for our present and future queer communities. We teach our students to challenge norms, to work for justice and to understand that our struggles are intertwined. When one of us can’t breathe, none of us lives free. We stand in solidarity with all marginalized communities and allies who are joining together to demand systemic change, racial justice and a society where Black Lives Matter, period.

QS Capstone Projects 2021

During the Spring 2021 semester, students graduating from California State University, Northridge with a minor in Queer Studies were tasked with completing a research project for their Senior Capstone, and were asked to convey the findings of that capstone project to the public in a podcast. Their podcasts are presented here in this digital exhibit, and cover a wide variety of topics that represent the multifaceted issues investigated within the interdisciplinary field of queer studies. Podcasts can be a research genre, and with the guidance of Professor Heidi Schumacher, students selected their own topics, conducted research using varied research methods (including textual analysis, interviews, autoethnography, and testimonio), and produced their own episodes by writing, recording, and editing their material. CSUN’s Queer Studies Program aims to support students as they contribute to scholarship and/or creative production and innovation in the interdisciplinary field of queer studies. We invite you to explore the scholarship and creative production of these outstanding graduates in their podcast episodes. VIEW AND LISTEN TO THE CAPSTONE PROJECTS


Queer Studies Program Statement of Solidarity after the Atlanta shooting

The Queer Studies Program stands in solidarity with Asian/Asian American and Pacific Islanders who have been targets of increasing violence in the past year. We grieve with the families who lost their loved ones on March 16th, 2021 in the horrific murders that took the life of 8 people, including 6 women of Asian descent in Atlanta. These racially motivated feminicides are the deadly result of the rising white supremacy in the U.S. (accelerated by racist rhetorics that targeted the AAPI community during the pandemic), combined with a long history of misogyny, xenophobia and the exploitation of and hatred toward marginalized populations (such as those engaged in sex work). These hate crimes make visible all the aggressive ways in which these communities have been dehumanized and targeted for elimination, despite the deflections in the outrageous press conference that followed.

As a community whose members have often faced violence for perceived "deviance" from mainstream norms around sexuality and gender, we recognize just how urgent and vital these issues are.  We know how violent acts such as this can terrorize communities, even as we acknowledge struggles within our own community to grapple with racism and misogyny. We stand in solidarity with the Asian/Asian American and Pacific Islander students, faculty and staff on our campus and the surrounding community who may fear for their safety at this time. We recognize the urgency to continually work to make these issues visible through our teaching and recommit to doing so. We call on our campus to fortify support in tangible ways for Asian American Studies in particular, as well as for all the departments and programs that teach about the issues converging in this hate crime. It is important to move beyond words to action and we stand in solidarity with all those who are working to effect systemic change and justice.

BLACK TRANS LIVES MATTER: Joint Solidarity Statement from Gender and Women’s Studies, Queer Studies and the Women’s Research and

This past week saw the brutal killings of  two black trans women, Dominque "Rem'mie"Fells of Philadelphia, PA, and Riah Milton of Liberty Township, Ohio. These murders came on the heels of the police killing of Tony McDade, a black trans man, on May 27, 2020. Violence against the Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Community, including fatal violence, is an epidemic, with black trans women bearing the brunt of this violence. Since the start of the year, there have been 14 reported murders of trans and gender non-conforming people in the US. Moreover, these killings take place in the backdrop of assaults on LGBTQ+ rights and continued state violence targeting peaceful protesters against police brutality around the country. The Gender and Women’s Studies Department, the Queer Studies Program, and the Women’s Research and Resource Center at CSUN stand in solidarity with protesters on the street demanding justice Dominque, Riah, Tony, and so many others, and we demand an end to the violation and murder of trans and gender non-conforming people at the hands of police and civilians. #ALLBLACKLIVESMATTER.


Pride paradeThe Queer Studies Program at CSUN began offering classes in the Fall of 2008.

Housed in the College of Humanities, QS is an interdisciplinary minor that questions normative constructions of sexuality and gender.

The Queer Studies minor focuses on histories, contemporary experiences, and community-based knowledges of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people, intersexed people, queers, and others who occupy non-heterosexist and non-normative gender positionalities.

The program explores how heterosexism, heteronormativity and transphobia intersect and collide with national, ethnic, racial, class and other identifications, fostering a community of learners who grapple with issues of diversity, gender, sexuality and social justice.

QS at CSUN provides an academic home for those who wish to study the intellectual, cultural and material conditions that have shaped our current understandings of sexuality and gender variation as well as for those who wish to generate new, resistant theories and practices. The program offers an undergraduate minor, sponsors courses, organizes lecture series, and brings together interested students, faculty, and larger Los Angeles communities.

Student Learning Outcomes

The Queer Studies Program has the following student learning outcomes. Minors in the program will:

  1. Woman with balloon headdressDiscuss and value the diversities of cultures, thought, perspectives, and literatures of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer people and communities
  2. Describe the ways in which ethnicity/race, gender (understood here in terms of the different contrasts between women and men, and between non-normatively gendered and normatively gendered people), and socioeconomic class shape the diversities of cultures, thought, perspectives, and literatures of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer people and communities;
  3. Analyze and explain how multiple dimensions of human identity and experience are shaped by sexuality and gender (understood here in terms of a contrast not between women and men but between non-normatively gendered people and normatively gendered people);
  4. Contribute to scholarship and/or creative production and innovation in the interdisciplinary field of queer studies and closely related fields such as transgender studies; and,
  5. Act as responsible global citizens committed to principles of freedom, equality, justice and participatory democracy in ways that value fully lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer people and communities.