The Ontology of Lgbtq People of Color

Tuesday, 12 July 2016
Location: Hörsaal 21 (Main Building)
Distributed Paper
Lee THORPE, The New School for Social Research, USA
My submission for the conference will explore how language affects identity formation and politics for LGBTQ people of color. In any given society, people come to an understanding of their identities through the deployment of language and the naturalization, and normalization, process of its usage. Yet when a person is outside the norms of society, how are language and experiences used to legitimize a person’s understanding of their self? I would argue that for LGBTQ people of color language and everyday experiences are used as ways to gain an understanding of who they are both in the LGBTQ community, as well as, within their own racial/ethnic communities.

There is a need for further research in this area because the ontology of LGBTQ people of color is rarely visible. Although most people would claim there has been an increase in LGTBQ visibility and acceptance, it is a specific demographic they are speaking about: the visibility, and acceptance, of White gay men. The majority of news articles that I have seen about LGBTQ people of color have usually been associated with some sort of violence, or some other contestation.