An evolving and expanding discipline, Queer Studies encompasses theories and thinkers from many fields: cultural studies, gay and lesbian studies, transgender studies, race studies, women’s and gender studies, literature, history, film, media, postmodernism, post-colonialism, and more. By engaging with this diverse range of fields, the work of Queer Studies distinguishes itself in that it focuses on issues surrounding sexuality and gender (and other axes of marginalized identity) and the way(s) that the questions raised in these other arenas might be modulated through that central lens.
The Queer Studies Program seeks to legitimate academic inquiry into sexuality, sex, and gender, to pose questions of normativity and power, and to foster community with and for historically marginalized groups. In queer studies courses, students will consider the lived experience and intersecting histories and identities of diverse populations of queer people. Students will examine critically the social, cultural, and scientific constructs of sexuality and gender as well as acquire a working knowledge of the history, issues, and theories of queer studies. Students will make connections between queer studies as an interdisciplinary program and the broader liberal arts curriculum. Queer Studies aims to empower and equip students to engage with communities—both local and global—as agents of social change.