Cruising Utopia: The Then and There of Queer Futurity

Cruising Utopia The Then and There of Queer Futurity The LGBT agenda for too long has been dominated by pragmatic issues like same sex marriage and gays in the military It has been stifled by this myopic focus on the present which is short sighted and

  • Title: Cruising Utopia: The Then and There of Queer Futurity
  • Author: José Esteban Muñoz
  • ISBN: 9780814757284
  • Page: 430
  • Format: Paperback
  • The LGBT agenda for too long has been dominated by pragmatic issues like same sex marriage and gays in the military It has been stifled by this myopic focus on the present, which is short sighted and assimilationist.Cruising Utopia seeks to break the present stagnancy by cruising ahead Drawing on the work of Ernst Bloch, Jose Esteban Munoz recalls the queer past for guidThe LGBT agenda for too long has been dominated by pragmatic issues like same sex marriage and gays in the military It has been stifled by this myopic focus on the present, which is short sighted and assimilationist.Cruising Utopia seeks to break the present stagnancy by cruising ahead Drawing on the work of Ernst Bloch, Jose Esteban Munoz recalls the queer past for guidance in presaging its future He considers the work of seminal artists and writers such as Andy Warhol, LeRoi Jones, Frank O Hara, Ray Johnson, Fred Herko, Samuel Delany, and Elizabeth Bishop, alongside contemporary performance and visual artists like Dynasty Handbag, My Barbarian, Luke Dowd, Tony Just, and Kevin McCarty in order to decipher the anticipatory illumination of art and its uncanny ability to open windows to the future.In a startling repudiation of what the LGBT movement has held dear, Munoz contends that queerness is instead a futurity bound phenomenon, a not yet here that critically engages pragmatic presentism Part manifesto, part love letter to the past and the future, Cruising Utopia argues that the here and now are not enough and issues an urgent call for the revivification of the queer political imagination.

    One thought on “Cruising Utopia: The Then and There of Queer Futurity”

    1. Muñoz is a brilliant close reader and I wished the scope of this academic project allowed for more of that. I mean the chapter connecting vogueing to Elizabeth Bishop, or the discourse on how camo is queer, and countless others of the many critical reading sections -- all genius. I was less compelled by the actual overarching theme of seeking utopia and making the world a better place by dreaming of the future. To call it naive is wrong because nothing about this book's ideas is anything but ut [...]

    2. I picked this up off the new-books shelf at the library because the title caught my eye, but was really disappointed in it. Since he is explicitly critiquing the current LGBT movement, I had hopes that his "queer" wasn't a synonym for gay men as it (and LGBT, really) so often is. Alas, while there are a handful of lesbians here and there and an aside about a trans friend, this book is totally about gay men, mainly pre-AIDS gay male culture and art.[return][return]I could have rolled with that if [...]

    3. Exquisite. José Muñoz's academic partiality to performance studies greatly enhances his argument for queer futurity. That is to say, Muñoz exemplifies the necessity for change embodied in time and space, and the constant (re)consideration(s) of hope and potentiality inherent in queer Otherness. Where the text lacks rhetorical frankness, it excels in intellectual thought, adds to the critical advancement of queer thought that continues to challenge queer assimilation into popular, heteronormat [...]

    4. I wasn't totally sold on a lot of the philosophical moves he pulled but overall i thought this book was pretty fucking entertaining. I mostly really liked his choice of case studies/subjects and how he picked art, stories, and cultural artifacts that he liked and believed in and built his book around them.

    5. First of all, it's always a joy to find an academically dense, intellectually rigorous book that also happens to be beautifully composed and fun to read. Muñoz accomplishes that difficult task with seeming ease. I really enjoyed this rebuttal to Edelman's No Future. Muñoz offers a view of queer utopia that recognizes queerness as the coming potentiality, something that has not yet arrived, a hopeful future beyond normativity and reproductive futurism. He engages with queer photography, art, li [...]

    6. A great response (and alternative) to Lee Edelman's antisocial/antirelational thesis inNo Future . This book is more focused on the intersections of queer studies and performance studies than anything I've read in the past, and the chapter on dancer Fred Herko completely blew me away. This book has lingered in my brain longer than most academic books, and I think a large part of that is Munoz's ability to find theory, art, and performance in the every day, especially through his theories of ephe [...]

    7. Esse livro demonstra a maturidade do atual estágio dos estudos Queer, com autocríticas profundas e propostas reluzentes e encantadoras. A estética Queer começa a se desenvolver para além do "desbunde", do "precário" e do "escandaloso", para tornar-se uma utopia libertária para as sensações. Rompe-se o binarismo da metafísica ocidental, o qual prende as possibilidades da vida numa trama de poder entre normal e anormal, dominadores e dominados. José Esteban Muñoz argumenta que a críti [...]

    8. Ernst Bloch-inspired utopianism filtered through a queer perspective, imagining the fleeting flashes of transcendence resulting from societal transgression as the basis for a new lifestyle founded on opposition to the mainstream, rather than a desire to integrate within it. Interesting, especially in its considerations of the queer world as a brand new shadow society in which existing systems can be reconsidered and reconfigured, but none of these pieces move far enough beyond their initial prem [...]

    9. There is a great amount of this book that I loved– "Introduction: Feeling Utopia" and "Queerness as Horizon" in particular– but there are also large swaths that feel outdated or out of touch with different queer identities and a praxis that changes the current lived experience(s) of queers imagining and creating utopias.This is a book best consumed in conversation, critically and actively.

    10. This is my principal text for my undergraduate dissertation. It is the first academic book i've been able to read all the way through. The exploration of queer themes and artists is very engaging and interesting. It caused me to think about my own stance as a queer person, and where, as an artist i can take my queerness into the future

    11. In my opinion, this is a book every queer identifying person must read at least once in their lifetime. It was not an easy read for me, but it is so worth taking the time to really understand. Queer culture NEEDED (needs) this book.

    12. this book, reading it right now, is making my brain explode. but explode-a-little-less, as suddenly things begin to make a vague sense. or to be joined in a choreography of vagueness. i'm currently engrossed in the depressing reality of how fleeting a satisfying activist life seems, and when i use the word activist its with the taken-for-granted idea that no part of myself and my intersections are left behind, i'm thinking of myself in the pat parker sense that one does. to live at that intersec [...]

    13. God. I bought this book a few summers ago and didn't understand a thing! But I read it because the idea of queerness on the horizon, of the future being better and yet unachievable appealed to me a great deal. I didn't get through it on the first reading, but after 2 years of gender studies, I get more of it now. It's very academic (in the language it uses anyway), yet it's personal and political. It uses art and history, storytelling and theories from other fields to approach the enactment of q [...]

    14. i should read disidentifications + various muñoz shorts first ---"A potentiality is a certain mode of nonbeing that is eminent, a thing that is present but not actually existing in the present tense.” "Queerness is a structuring and educated mode of desiring that allows us to see the future beyond the quagmire of the present. The here and now is a prison house. We must strive, in the face of the here and now’s totalizing rendering of reality, to think and feel a then and there. Some will sa [...]

    15. I don't know how I lived without this book. I kept renewing it from the library - I didn't want to let it go. I wanted to live inside this book. Muñoz's definitions of queer futurity, identity performance, anti-anti-utopian, aesthetics of amateurity, and the like, have deep resonance in my life. His critique of "mainstream" queer goals is dead on, and his exploration of art forms that expand his idea of queer futurity (and failure. and virtuosity) was fascinating. There is no doubt that I will [...]

    16. Read partially but intensely for school. I'm not particularly taken with what he has to say about the various specific performances he discusses, but I think the framework of critical utopia that he uses is pretty interesting and may prove useful to me in a very, very different context.

    17. Sloppy in its use of Ernst Bloch (don't try to use the footnotes to follow up on anything), but I didn't really care. I shared his instincts about his archive, and I am in complete sympathy with the spirit of the study.

    18. If you enjoy Queer theory, philosophy, or art this book is perfect you! Munoz is a genius and anyone that is into Queer Theory should have this book on their "must read" shelf!

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