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Technologies, Page 2

Scalar Implications of Lesbian-Queer Organizing

I was sitting in what was a back bedroom of a brownstone in Brooklyn in the winter of 2008-9 and I was cold. Archives are often cold. The bedroom-cum-archives had become a records room that now hosts 11 seven-foot high filing cabinets bulging with the organizational and biographical history of lesbians. Around me, scores of boxes towered over me and a bookcase stuffed with comments, mementos, and original Wonder Women comics (which I read often during lunch) sat to my left. I was at—what else but—a dining room table with my legs nestled between more boxes underneath and wearing a knitted cap when I noticed a very interesting pattern in the organizational records of the Lesbian Herstory Archives (LHA) I was reviewing for my research. The pattern was about scale.

Not long ago scholars have argued that scale is socially produced (Smith 1992; Marston 2000). In other words, the …

Lesbian-Queer Organizations: Feminist, Women-Oriented, &/or Placed

This is the third in a series of posts on data visualizations I have created based on the complete records of all available lesbian-queer organizations in New York City at the Lesbian Herstory Archives (LHA). In my reading of LHA lesbians’ and queer women’s organizations’ purpose statements, I noticed a striking pattern of decreasing mentions of feminism in the organizational purpose statements over time coupled with a greater of cross-gender organizations. Furthermore, there was a considerable increase in the number of groups with access to permanent space to perform their work and organizing. While both changes speak to the radical cultural and economic shifts within lgbtq communities throughout this period, they are intriguing to place side-by-side to see our history anew. My statistical analyses of these numbers are forthcoming but the visualization of this data already afford significant insights into the shifts in everyday lesbian-queer life from 1983 to 2008, …

Lesbian-Queer Organizations: A History in Openings & Closings

This is the second in a series of posts on data visualizations I have created based on the complete records of all available lesbian-queer organizations at the Lesbian Herstory Archives. One of the key takeaways from my focus groups with lesbians and queer women who came out between 1983 and 2008 was the persistence experience of loss and mourning of key lesbian-queer places, namely neighborhoods and bars, as well as bookstores and other community spaces. At the same time, many women, especially those who had come out in the 1980s and 1990s generations, lived with an expectation that one just created the organization or space they required, often through activism or socializing. When we turn to the actual numbers of lesbian and queer organizations in terms of their totals and their patterns of opening and closing, there is more to these shifts.

The generational social and political shifts explain a …

(Data)Visualizing Lesbian-Queer Space & Time

lha org records - all copyThis is what lesbian-queer history looks like: the detailed notes on 381 lesbian-queer organizations look like in a spreadsheet. The white means the organization was existent; the black means it did not yet exist or closed.
Jen Jack Gieseking CC BY-NC-SA

Over the span of a year, I surveyed the complete collection of 2,300+ organizational records at the Lesbian Herstory Archives (LHA). This research was originally part of 2008-9 dissertation research and is now a part of the series of books I am writing on lesbian-queer spaces of in/justice in New York City from 1983 to 2008—from AIDS to “The L Word.” In a series of five posts over the next two weeks, I will share the first in a series of interactive data visualizations from my in depth reading of the 381 NYC-based records of lesbian and/or queer organizations spanning 25 years (1983-2008) whose records are available at …

Our Queer Lives and Spaces (OQLS) Project Launches Today!

Today we are launching the Our Queer Lives and Spaces (OQLS) Project! 

OQLS is a living archive that affords lgbtqtstsiq people a space to map and share their stories online through mobile devices, multimedia, & web and geospatial technologies. In other words, anyone can text, call, or type in her/his/zee’s own stories from anywhere in the world and it will geocode to one giant, queer map. Hashtag: #OQLS.

Anyone and everyone is invited to join!

To enroll: 

  • Option A) Call (617) 286-5071. After a welcome, press 2 to create an acct & leave an audio story.
  • Option B) Send an mms (picture message) or an sms (text message) to: vojo@vojo.co Include a description of the picture. Yes, you can send an mms or sms to an email account!

To post to OQLS:

  • Option A) Send a sms or mms (text and/or picture message) from your phone to oqls@vojo.co
  • Option

Announcing the Our Queer Lives & Space (#OQLS) Project

Our Queer Lives and Spaces (#OQLS) Project is a living queer archive that affords lgbtqtstsi a space to map & share their stories in their own words and images. Read more about & join the project here: http://jgieseking.org/CLAGSqNY/oqls/.

oqls flyer2

“Queer(ing) New York”: Education for Change, on May Day and Beyond

The CLAGS Seminar in the City that I am teaching, “Queer(ing) New York,” will begin this evening, May 1st. Since creating this course, a lot of activists have wondered why we would choose to begin on International Worker’s Day. I see May Day as not only the right to work but the right to learn and to know. Free, open, and accessible education–like Queer(ing) New York–must instead be made common and therefore part of our public commons.

Courses like this are the ways we can reimagine education, and also reimagine and enact equality. Lgbtq people live through and walk through absences everyday, ranging from issues of recognition to acceptance, from using bathrooms to using the subway, from the bar that used to be there but closed to the home that used to be there but doesn’t count you as family anymore. As a group that lives the marginalization …

After #TtW13, and on Bodies and Bits

I had a riveting weekend helping to coordinate and preside over a session at Theorizing the Web 2013 (#TtW13). I massively enjoyed presiding over the “Bodies and Bits” panel. These papers tackled those questions close to my heart and always in my mind. How do we invoke the body in the digital? Where does the cyborg begin and end? I have another post forthcoming on my thoughts connecting this fantastic work of the presenters to my own work. In the meantime, you can watch a recording of the livestream from our room–we kicked off at the 2hr40min mark.

Bodies and Bits | Room B | #b3

Presider:   Jen Jack Gieseking   @jgieseking

Hashtag Moderator:   Donald W. Taylor II   @donaldtaylorii

Panelists:

Christina Dunbar-Hester   ‘The Internet Is A Series Of (Fallopian) Tubes’: “Diversity” Activism in Hacker and Software Projects

Gina Neff & co-authored by Brittany Fiore-Silfvast   @ginasue   What We Talk About When We …

Judith Butler & Omar Barghouti Speak Out about #BDS at Brooklyn College #CUNY (2/7/13)

I was not able to attend Judith Butler’s & Omar Barghouti’s talks last night at Brooklyn College, CUNY (2/7/13) on #BDS but jumped in and made a Storify when I couldn’t stop reading the tweets. Read the play-by-play here via Storify. Butler shared her remarks with The Nation if you prefer a more traditional read.

Either way, consider yourself educated and in the struggle once you read these notes. If you are around NYC in April, the Homonationalism and Pinkwashing Conference at the CUNY Graduate Center will be bringing together scholars and activists to share work on how we can end apartheid in Israel-Palestine.

Bringing Sandy into the Classroom, from Fish to Tech, Politics to Design

How can we bring the issues and aches of Sandy into the classroom to help work through what has taken place? Here’s my take for the Environmental Methods course in the masters program in Sustainable Interior Environments program at the Fashion Institute of Technology SUNY that I am teaching.

In order to grapple with Sandy and confront the effects of increasing natural disasters at home and abroad, my next class in will use our next class meeting to discuss the inequalities that Sandy re-revealed in the city, the politics of a “natural” disaster, and designing for what lies ahead. As I asked my students: These are all short pieces so please read them all. Think about how each piece–all from different interests, fields, and groups–fits into the next and how the design examples in the last NYT piece fall short or support these larger issues, from fish to tech, from

For those arriving from Feministing and/or Salon, welcome! I encourage you to wander around the site. You might especially be interested in a Gender, Sexuality, and Space Bibliography I have building for some time. I am also the webcaptain for the Gender & Geography Bibliography, a project begun over twenty years ago and still growing. Lastly, do wander over to outhistory.org which hosts tons of exciting content, both new and archival, on lgbtq experiences over time and throughout the world.

Do check back! Over time I will create specific lists of readings for undergraduate students and teaching undergraduates, and graduate students and teaching graduate students, as well as readings by subjectivity and identity (lesbian, trans, etc.) and environment (rural, urban, suburban)

The Lesbian-Queer Space Mapping Project will relaunch next year.

Google Has Gaydar / Google Gets into Outing

Google is doing data analysis for you in your web search, just in an effort to out people or purportedly have gaydar.  Recent articles in The Advocate and Gawker indicate that typing in “is jodie foster gay” will give you a reply Foster’s sexual orientation is, indeed, “Lesbian” (the bold I borrowed from the google search, see image).  The same can be said for a variety of celebrities but there is no rhyme or reason to who is included or why.

I find this to be odd and inappropriate for two reasons.  First, who has the need to make a “best guess” of Katy Perry’s or Enrique Iglesias’ sexuality, or anyone’s sexuality for that matter (unless perhaps you’re aiming to ask them out and find that key)?  While I encourage everyone to be out, we live in a world where this is not yet safe for people because …