image of Brook Lober

Brooke Lober

QUEERtalks returns to Illinois State University’s campus this spring with a focus on new scholarship in the interdisciplinary field of LGBTQA/queer studies, with speakers presenting innovative work.

To honor International Women’s Day, next in the QUEERtalks series will be “Women Against Imperialism: Tracing Queer/Feminist Revisions of Home.” Assistant Professor of Women and Gender Studies at Sonoma State University Brooke Lober will speak at 12:30 p.m. Monday, March 6, in the LGBT/Queer Studies and Services Institute located in the Professional Development Annex at 205 S. Main St.

This talk argues that one exemplary site for a revolutionary revision of homemaking is the group Women Against Imperialism (WAI), a grassroots activist collective whose work enacts both feminist/queer coalition politics, and radical reinventions of subjectivity. Drawing on Lober’s research for the WAI Oral History Project, she emphasizes the homemaking and childrearing practices enacted in WAI, and the socioeconomic conditions in which they took shape.

WAI activists brought ideologies of lesbian feminist and socialist politics “home” through practices including collective housing, painstaking negotiation of “chosen family,” shared childrearing organized through “childcare teams,” and commitment to caretaking, including eldercare and healthcare, which became especially important during the onset of the AIDS crisis. Lober analyzes WAI’s production of public activism combined with feminist homemaking through the lens of feminist and queer theory that militates against the hierarchies implicit in the public/private binary.

This year’s sponsors of QUEERtalks are Illinois State’s Women’s and Gender Studies Program, the LGBT/Queer Studies and Services Institute, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Department of Philosophy, Department of English, Department of Politics and Government, Latin American and Latino/a Studies, Pride, and The League of Extraordinary Genders (TLEG).

For additional information, contact Women’s and Gender Studies at (309) 438-2947.