Queering the Narrative: Diverse Pasts and Political Futures

Author(s): Chelsea Blackmore

Year: 2016


This paper explores the impact of queer theory in destabilizing heteronormative and other fixed discourses in archaeological method, practice, and interpretation. By challenging the very idea of what constitutes “normal’ in archaeology, queer theory provides new ways of thinking about and engaging with change, process, and difference. These discussions become important and necessary interventions in political debates around modern queer identities as well as social diversity at a much larger scale. Debates around sexuality, race, gender, and class remain at the forefront of political and social life in the United States. Yet the past, even the recent past, is rarely invoked in these conversations. By understanding the cultural and temporal situatedness of these categories, archaeology can and should contribute to these conversations. How can we incorporate queer theory into our classrooms in such a way that expands archaeological possibilities but also opens the discipline to a more diverse array of voices and identities? By deconstructing the very essence of “normal”, whether we speak of the past or the present, we bridge these spaces and times in very real and substantive ways.

Cite this Record

Queering the Narrative: Diverse Pasts and Political Futures. Chelsea Blackmore. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 403772)