black-queer

“‘Q.U.E.E.N.’ definitely is an acronym,” Monae explains during an interview at Fuse HQ. “It’s for those who are marginalized.” She says the “Q” represents the queer community, the “U” for the untouchables, the “E” for emigrants, the second “E” for the excommunicated and the “N” for those labeled as negroid.

“It’s for everyone who’s felt ostracized,” she adds. “I wanted to create something for people who feel like they want to give up because they’re not accepted by society.”

Black Queer and Trans* Reading List.

Please add books or essays written by Black and/or POC Queer and Trans* writers (fiction and non-fiction) and books or essays written about the Black Queer and Trans* experience. 

  • Black Queer Studies: A Critical Anthology by E. Patrick Johnson (Editor), Mae G. Henderson
  • Aberrations In Black: Toward A Queer Of Color Critique by Roderick A. Ferguson
  • Punks, Bulldaggers, and Welfare Queens: The Radical Potential of Queer Politics?” by Cathy Cohen (PDF)
  • Death and Rebirth of a Movement:Queering Critical Ethnic Studies
    by Cathy Cohen (PDF)
  • Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States (Queer Ideas/Queer Action by Andrea J. Ritchie
  • Mutha Is Half a Word: Intersections of Folklore, Vernacular, Myth, and Queerness in Black Female Culture by L.H. Stallings
  • Black Queer Identity Matrix: Towards An Integrated Queer of Color Framework (Black Studies & Critical Thinking: Lgbt Studies) by Sheena C. Howard
  • Black Like Us: A Century of Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual African American Fiction by Don Weise 
  • Black Girl Dangerous on Race, Queerness, Class and Gender by Mia McKenzie
  • Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More by Janet Mock
  • Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries: Survival, Revolt, and Queer Antagonist Struggle (PDF
    A compilation of historical documents, interviews, and critical analyses of STAR, a group of street queens in early 70s New York City who self-organized for survival and revolt. Contained within are pamphlets distributed by STAR, as well as interviews with and speeches by Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson. Additionally, we are excited to include a critical essay by Ehn Nothing on STAR’s legacy, the enemies of queer insurrection, and the war against gender.
  • Decolonizing Trans/gender 101 by b. binaohan
    A short, accessible disruption of the hegemonic and imperial aspirations of white trans/gender theory. it seeks to remedy the reductive (and, thus, violent erasure) nature of trans/gender 101s that seek to explicate (but really construct) a white trans/gender discourse assumed to have universal legitimacy. a legitimacy that has widespread implications and consequences far beyond the borders of whiteness.
Audre Lorde said something to me that has continued even now to inform me. She made it very clear that none of us comes with our consciousness fully developed; it is a constant work that we have to be ever vigilant about. I’m counseling myself these days around patience. I’m counseling myself around understanding that we come to issues not only from different sites of experience but with different levels of consciousness, so as not to be so quick, not to be so judgmental, not to be so rapid around closing a door, around writing someone off.
—  Essex Hemphill, Living the Word/Looking for Home