Local Americanist: Travis Foster

December 6, 2018
2:00 - 3:30 PM
2115 Tawes

White Supremacist Bottomhood in American Literary History

This talk responds to Chandan Reddy’s insistence that “race is the political unconscious of sexuality” by considering a long history of white male yearning to be sexually penetrated by nonwhite men. Even as such bottoming desires challenge the liberal self-possession and bodily autonomy of white manhood, they simultaneously turn submissiveness into a means for gaining power and securing racial dominance. Building on queer of color critique and Frantz Fanon’s analysis of white colonial homosexuality, Dr. Travis Foster will consider a range of American literary texts—from nineteenth-century travel writings to James Baldwin’s Another Country—all of which challenge us to better understand both the extent and the limits of white supremacy’s capacity to inflect otherwise resistant practices.

Professor Travis Foster is an Assistant Professor of English at Villanova University. His research focuses include race, queer studies, genre and genre criticism, and regionalist fiction. 

For more information contact: Robert Levine (rlevine@umd.edu)