Un‐believing the matrix: queering consensual heteronormativity

Atkinson, Elizabeth and DePalma, Renee (2009) Un‐believing the matrix: queering consensual heteronormativity. Gender and Education, 21 (1). pp. 17-29. ISSN 0954-0253

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Two key concepts arising from Butler’s work are the heterosexual matrix – the conflation of sex‐gender‐sexuality which leads to the normalisation of heterosexuality – and performative reinscription – the discursive process by which the marginalised Other brings new meanings to normative identity constructions. While we have found both concepts useful, we consider the extent to which the very act of naming – or in Althusser’s words, hailing – the heterosexual matrix reifies it. Drawing on our own research on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality in primary schools, we consider disruptions (breaking what Butler describes as echo‐chains) and reinscriptions (forging new ones) as approaches to queering consent. This vision requires disorganisation rather than resistance and replaces the metaphor of the matrix as a system of externally imposed rules with an understanding of how the matrix – to the extent that it exists at all – relies on hegemony as organised consent.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Education and Society > School of Education
Depositing User: Leah Maughan
Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2021 19:07
Last Modified: 03 Feb 2021 19:07
URI: http://sure.sunderland.ac.uk/id/eprint/13162

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