|Public Information Office
310 Owen Hall, Campus PO 1820
Asheville, NC 28804-8507
828/251/6526 FAX: 828/251-6777
|For Immediate Release
March 21, 2001
Yale Sociologist is Keynote Speaker
at UNC Asheville's Scholarly
Yale University Professor Joshua Gamson will be the keynote speaker at UNC Asheville's fourth annual GLBT (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered) Studies Conference to be held Friday-Saturday, March 23-24, on the UNCA campus.
This national academic conference, beginning with a series of panels and workshops Friday morning, will offer 30 scholarly presentations by faculty and students from institutions across the U.S., including the University of Pennsylvania, UNC-Chapel Hill, George WashingtonUniversity, George Mason University, UNC Asheville, San Jose State University, Vanderbilt University, UNC-Greensboro, Illinois State University, Georgia State University and Western Carolina University.
The conference is sponsored by the Mills Distinguished Lecturer Fund, UNCA's departments of Sociology, Philosophy, and Political Science, the Women's Studies Program, the Honors Program, the Office of Minority and Diversity Affairs, the Office of Multicultural Programs, the Office of Academic Affairs, the Office of the Chancellor, Enrollment Services, the Office of Student Affairs, and UNCA-OUT.
"This year's interdisciplinary conference will explore the experiences, consequences and effects of GLBT visibility in the public realm, GLBT identity and how it is developed in a public context, the intersections of class and gender, and the role of cultural resistance and nonconformity in social change," said Karin Peterson, a conference organizer and UNCA Sociology Department faculty member. "In addition to serving as a wonderful forum for the exchange of ideas between scholars, students and members of the community, the conference will make an important contribution to ongoing efforts concerning inclusiveness and diversity at UNC Asheville."
Lesbian/Gay Studies emerged as an academic discipline in the 1970s. The next two decades saw a rapid growth of scholarly and critical work in the field, peer-reviewed journals,and the establishment of Lesbian/Gay Studies, Queer Studies, or GLBT Studies in many U.S. colleges and universities.
Gamson, a noted scholar, has focused much of his research and teaching on contemporary Western commercial culture and mass media, and on the history and sociology of sexuality. His most recent books are "Claims to Fame: Celebrity in Contemporary America" and "Freaks Talk Back: Tabloid Talk Shows and Sexual Nonconformity." His writing has appeared in The Nation, The American Prospect, Tikkun and The Utne Reader.
Gamson's keynote address, "Visibility Traps: Television Talk Shows, Sexual Nonconformity, and Public Space," will examine how television tabloid talk shows contribute in contradictory ways to the landscape of public debate around issues of sexuality and difference. He will speak at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 24, in Owen Conference Center. The event is open to the public; admission is free.
Gamson's exploration of the "intersection" of tabloid talk shows and public debate is part of the conference's multidisciplinary focus this year on "Queer Intersections: Community, Identity and Public Space."
The use of "queer" in the title of the conference and in academic circles may be surprising to some, noted Keith Bramlett, one of the conference organizers and a faculty member in UNCA's Sociology Department. "Just as the gay and lesbian community earlier reclaimed the pink triangle, used to identify homosexuals in concentration camps, the word 'queer,' once used pejoratively to disempower individuals, has now been reclaimed by many, with pride. You'lloften hear it used by gay and lesbian college students and in academic papers, or the phrase GLBT, which is the acronym for Gay, Lesbian, Transgendered and Bisexual Studies. GLBT is an inclusive phrase that may best describe how this field has grown."
The entire conference is open to the community; the registration fee is $20, or $10 for either day. The registration for undergraduate and graduate students is also $20 for the conference or $10 for each day. For more information, call 828/251-6976 or visit UNCA'sGLBT Conference Web site.
Administration - Community Resources - Inside UNCA
Prospective Students - Current Students - Alumni and Friends - Faculty and Staff
Home - Calendars - Directories - News and Events - Site Map - Search