Synopses & Reviews
A major intervention in the fields of critical race theory, black feminism, and queer theory, The Erotic Life of Racism
contends that theoretical and political analyses of race have largely failed to understand and describe the profound ordinariness of racism and the ways that it operates as a quotidian practice. If racism has an everyday life, how does it remain so powerful and yet mask its very presence? To answer this question, Sharon Patricia Holland moves into the territory of the erotic, understanding racism's practice as constitutive to the practice of racial being and erotic choice.
Reemphasizing the black/white binary, Holland reinvigorates critical engagement with race and racism. She argues that only by bringing critical race theory, queer theory, and black feminist thought into conversation with each other can we fully envision the relationship between racism and the personal and political dimensions of our desire. The Erotic Life of Racism provocatively redirects our attention to a desire no longer independent of racism but rather embedded within it.
Situated at the intersection of critical race theory and queer theory, the book argues that everyday encounters of racism--in queer moments of pleasure and terror--construct our understanding of race and reveal our connections to one another.
In this critique of the fields of feminist theory, queer theory, and critical race theory, Sharon Holland describes how, despite decades of theoretical and political work focused on race, we are continually affected by everyday experiences of racism and attached to old patterns of racist thought.
About the Author
Sharon Patricia Holland is Associate Professor of English at Duke University. She is the author of Raising the Dead: Readings of Death and Black Subjectivity and the coeditor of Crossing Waters, Crossing Worlds: The African Diaspora in Indian Country, both also published by Duke University Press.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Last Word on Racism 1
1. Race: There's No Place like "Beyond" 17
2. Desire, or "A Bit of the Other" 41
3. S.H.E.: Reproducing Discretion as the Better Part of (Queer) Valor 65
Conclusion: Racism's Last Word 95