Relocating Home and Diasporizing the South Asian Queer

Bhattacharjee, Shuhita (2018) Relocating Home and Diasporizing the South Asian Queer. In: Diaspora Poetics and Homing in South Asian Women's Writing: Beyond Trishanku. Lexington Books, pp. 1-87.

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This chapter examines the complex representation of queerness as an imagined diasporic state in Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni’s “The Blooming Season for Cacti”([2000] 2001) and Amruta Patil’s Kari (2008). I trace a longer trajectory with works like Ismat Chughtai’s “The Quilt”([1941] 2009; a translation of her Urdu original titled “Lihaaf”) and productions like Deepa Mehta’s Fire (1996) that came before it, and problematize through my argument the very idea of the queer diaspora itself by showing how Patil’s work which is produced not technically by a diasporic author at all should still form part of this continuum. My aim is to depart from the usual works on “queer diaspora” that focus on “queering the diaspora” and that do so by showing how the queer state and the diasporic state come together in their common transgressive potential. Instead, I attempt to diasporize the queer (to borrow from Avtar Brah’s reference in Cartographies of Diaspora to “diasporising processes” and the “condition of diasporisation”), drawing on literary-cultural works by women of Indian origin, a mix that includes both strictly diasporic compositions and others that only evoke the diaspora (Brah 1996, 204, 240). These are all works that have been discussed explicitly in the context of the South Asian diaspora, with the final and crucial exception of Amruta Patil’s Kari that brings my argument to culmination, showing that queer sexuality as an experiential space evokes the diaspora as a state of mind. I argue, therefore, the crucial need to now diasporize the queer, demonstrating the way it is constructed as a state of desire that evokes and resides in the imagined diasporic space …

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IITH Creators:
IITH CreatorsORCiD
Bhattacharjee, Shuhita
Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: South ,Asian, Queer
Subjects: Arts > Liberal arts
Divisions: Department of Liberal Arts
Depositing User: . LibTrainee 2021
Date Deposited: 15 Sep 2022 09:17
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2022 09:17
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