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"Booger Hollar, NC: Life Writing and the Search for Queer Roots"

Friday, March 27, 2015
12:00 AM
Institute for the Humanities, 202 S. Thayer, #1022

This talk will present part of a completed project, Queer Roots for the Diaspora, Ghosts in the Family Tree, a comparative study in queer disaspora studies that takes as its central concern the persistence of a desire for rooted identity in spite of conceptual debates that have subjected the concept of roots to both political and theoretical critiques.  Specifically, the talk will consider the role of life-writing or personal criticism in the book’s final chapter, which takes as its starting place a haunted spot near where Hayes grew up, as well as its connection to his own family tree, to read two haunted North Carolina novels, one familiar, Thomas Wolfe’s Look Homeward, Angel, the other perhaps less familiar, Dream Boy, by the gay novelist Jim Grimsley.