The Graduate Center offers an interdisciplinary concentration in Lesbian/Gay/Queer Studies, a rapidly growing, multidisciplinary enterprise whose goal is the study of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered peoples and their histories and cultures, as well as the study of sexuality and its role in the deployment of cultural and social power.

For the Spring 2016 Course-Listing in Lesbian/Gay/Queer Studies, please click here.

Lesbian and Gay Studies is a system of inquiry that examines the roles of same-sex desire across and among cultures and histories. Queer Studies views sexuality not as a stable category of identification or as merely a series of physical acts, but sees desire itself as a cultural construction that is central to the institutionalization and normalization of certain practices and discourses that organize social relations and hierarchies. Together, the two constitute a field whose best work often weaves together both types of analysis.

Lesbian/Gay/Queer Studies insists on a pluralistic, multicultural, and comparative approach in its negotiation within national, racial, ethnic, religious, economic, gender, and age-defined communities. More than a response to this demographic imperative, this field actively seeks to collapse fields of inquiry, to reveal contradictions and confrontations within and among disciplines, and to suggest a new model for academic study within the university. Its development has paralleled the fields of women’s studies and race studies, emerging as a separate area of inquiry in the 1980s, although much work was being done by individual scholars prior to that time. The various names of already institutionalized programs in the field—”Sexuality Studies,” “Queer Studies,” and “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered Studies”—reflect the plurality of the field’s methodological approaches.

The field traverses the arts, humanities, and the social sciences‹including literary theory, film theory, cultural and social history, psychology, sociology, anthropology, political science, theater, economics—as well as the natural sciences—biology, epidemiology, immunology, genetics. Its antecedents can be traced back to the emergence of “sexology” as a legitimate field of academic investigation and scholarship in the nineteenth century. Sexology coincided with the institution of many now-traditional scientific and humanistic disciplines within the academy. The rationalization of knowledge into discrete disciplines corresponded with the construction of “the homosexual” within these newly emerging discourses as a crime, an illness, a person, and a problem to be solved. In Lesbian/Gay/Queer Studies, heterosexuality and homosexuality are viewed as identities and social statuses, as categories of knowledge, and as languages that frame what we understand as bodies; as such, the domain of inquiry transcends traditional disciplinary constructs and demands new forms of scholastic endeavors.

Students are required to matriculate in one of The Graduate Center’s established doctoral programs and must take the core class, Introduction to Lesbian and Gay/Queer Studies, as well as three electives within the Concentration’s course lists.

For further information

Please contact us at info@clags.org, or phone number 212-817-1955. You can also come visit us in room 7115 at The Graduate Center, CUNY.

Affiliated Graduate Faculty

Name Department Home School
Meene Alexander English GC
Juan Battle Sociology Hunter
Mark Blasius Political Science LaGuardia
Sarah Chinn English Hunter
Patricia Clough Sociology, Women’s Studies Queens
Rod Colvin Public Management John Jay
Kate Crehan Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work Staten Island
Paisley Currah Political Science Brooklyn
Mario DiGangi English Lehman
Hester Eisenstein Sociology Queens
Dagmar Herzog History GC
Cindi Katz Environmental Psychology GC
Wayne Koestenbaum English GC
Catherine Lavender History, American Studies Staten Island
Giancarlo Lombardi Modern Languages Staten Island
Lisa Jean Moore Staten Island
Eugenia Paulicelli Italian, Comp Lit, Women’s Studies Queens
Rosalind Petchesky Political Science Hunter
Victoria Pitts-Taylor Sociology Queens
Robert Reid-Pharr English GC
James Saslow Art History and Theatre Queens
Sarah Schulman English Staten Island
Joseph Straus Music GC
Charles Tien Political Science Hunter
James Wilson Theatre LaGuardia

Affiliated Undergraduate Faculty

Name Department Home School
Juan Battle Sociology Hunter
Mark Blasius Political Science LaGuardia
Sarah Chinn English Hunter
Patricia Clough Sociology, Women’s Studies Queens
Rod Colvin Public Management John Jay
Kate Crehan Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work Staten Island
Paisley Currah Political Science Brooklyn
Mario DiGangi English Lehman
Hester Eisenstein Sociology Queens
Catherine Lavender History, American Studies Staten Island
Giancarlo Lombardi Modern Languages Staten Island
Lisa Jean Moore Staten Island
Eugenia Paulicelli Italian, Comp Lit, Women’s Studies Queens
Rosalind Petchesky Political Science Hunter
Victoria Pitts Sociology Queens
James Saslow Art History and Theatre Queens
Sarah Schulman English Staten Island
Charles Tien Political Science Hunter
James Wilson Theatre LaGuardia

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