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This paper may be of particular interest to:  Students
Type: Paper
Paper Title: INCONGRUOUS JUXTAPOSITIONS: CAMP THROUGH ESTHER NEWTON'S EYES
Author: EVELYN BLACKWOOD (Purdue University)   
Date/Time: Fri., 2:00 PM
Co-Author(s): EVELYN BLACKWOOD (Purdue University) 
Abstract: Esther Newton’s classic work “Mother Camp” was the first full ethnography of a homosexual community. The impact of that work goes far beyond the “first” that Newton accomplished by tackling the subject. She opened the door to LGBT studies in anthropology, becoming the Radclyffe Hall of anthropology who showed us that queer communities and lives were worthy of study. By writing about female impersonators in the U.S., she critiqued the normalcy of a gender system that believed in itself, posing the challenge that gender was an artificial construct. Among the many insights of her body of work, I highlight in this paper the role of camp in queering gender. Extending Newton’s analysis to tombois in West Sumatra, I explore how tombois’ performance of “camp,” which parodies versions of both femininity and masculinity, speaks to recognition of their own excesses that sidestep, go beyond and thereby belie normative sex/gender.

Program Number: 3-0815
Session Title: THE MOTHER (CAMP) OF US ALL: LGBT ANTHROPOLOGY HONORS ESTHER NEWTON
Session Sponsor: Association for Queer Anthropology
Session Date/Time: Fri., 1:45 PM-5:30 PM
Organizer(s): ELLEN LEWIN (University of Iowa) 
Chair(s): ELLEN LEWIN (University of Iowa)  
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