Week 40 — love and lubrication

It’s Pride month, and yesterday would have been London Pride. I don’t miss the parade or any of that corporate pinkwashing. But, I’m ngl… I miss meandering through different parts of the city, celebrating the joy of being queer together and all the things which I can’t write down.

I’m using this year especially to reflect and be grateful for all the Black, trans, queer women who have fought against every odd to bring us to where we are now. Still a long way to go, but, they have shown us, other worlds are possible

Love and Lubrication in the Archives, or rukus!: A Black Queer Archive for the United Kingdom
by Ajamu X, Topher Campbell, and Mary Stephens

I wanted to interview the folks behind rukus! for my dissertation. Turns out Ajamu and Topher are low-key famous so that went out the window. However, Tohper was kind enough to aware me to this paper about the project.

That’s the very thing about rukus!, it’s not a singular thing, it’s about confusing the notion of simplicity. You have to embrace complexity and diversity when you are dealing with the idea of Black, gay, or lesbian identity. With rukus! we are building our own identity.

I’m sad that the website is defunct but the archive itself still exists at LMA. Signing off everything the way they do from now on.

The Dominant, the Residual and the Emergent in Archival Imagination
by Lawrence Liang

I don’t know why I’m so taken with archives. Especially considering my complete lack of sentimentality or propensity to any kind of personal archiving.

And if the displaced are always looking for a new home which they can call their own, then perhaps one way of thinking about the productive relation between the discarded image is to see it as images that await their activation through the creation of a new house of meaning, and there can be no higher aspiration for archives than to facilitate meaning produced through the discarded.

Queer Surveillance
by Gary Kafer and Daniel Grinberg

This article is good but imo needlessly dense. I hereby commit to writing my dissertation without it sounding like word spaghetti.

…queer surveillance gestures toward the spatial and temporal contingency of identity formations that hegemonic structures of visibility, acceptability, and legality continually make and unmake. Attending to the queerness of surveillance demands a vigilance to the ways in which norms mutate across sites of control and how different intersections of queer and trans identity can be rendered threatening or secure in relation to certain abject Others.

HCI as heterodoxy: Technologies of identity and the queering of interaction with computers
by Ann Light

A bit let down by the premise of this article, which promises to ‘queer,’ ‘subvert,’ ‘think obliquely’ but which examples include

build[ing] ‘‘Fakebook’’ pages with pretend identities

I do like the notion that

we can design for enhanced subversion.

I’m just not very convinced that Light has moved beyond the orthodox at all.

A Cyborg Manifesto
by Donna Haraway

What do you write about such a classic text? I’m gonna go with nothing.

The cyborg is resolutely committed to partiality, irony, intimacy, and perversity. It is oppositional, utopian, and completely without innocence.

…a cyborg world might be about lived social and bodily realities in which people are not afraid of their joint kinship with animals and machines, not afraid of permanently partial identities and contradictory standpoints.

A New Land Contract
by Alastair Parvin

The housing thing really sucks. If you live in London, it REALLY sucks. Parvin goes a long way toward explaining why and presenting new ideas.

The land system is not sexy, it’s not emotive. It’s complicated. But once you see it you cannot unsee it. It sits at the root of so many of the issues that are flooding across our timelines every day.

Also, in case you missed the memo, there is no such thing as a good landlord.

‘wait, what work exactly is it that we’re paying Landlords to do?’

And basically the answer is: nothing. We’re paying them to… not evict us.


Anne Carson and Archive by Alejandra Oliva

“We're given all these things,” she said, “and then we have nowhere to put them, so all we can do is archive it, put it away somewhere safe.”⠀

Interview with Reni Eddo-Lodge by Nosheen Iqbal: ‘The debate on racism is a game to some and I don't want to play’

I’m not looking to tell people what to do. People are very willing to give up their agency and look for leadership when they feel impassioned about something and I don’t want that at all, I want them to use their critical thinking skills to challenge racism and I can’t tell them how to do that.

Solidarity means dismantling the system everywhere by Progressive International

An opening is an opening — not an assurance. The scenes that have emerged from these international protests are those of a system at breaking point. But there is no guarantee in which direction it will break.

Racist anti-Black Lives Matter protesters are not far right outliers – they’re shaping mainstream society by Dawn Duhaney

We need to acknowledge as a society that the far right isn’t always an extremist group featured on TV documentaries. Far right rhetoric exists in the mainstream right now, amongst our elected politicians and even potentially in our own families, friendships and social circles.

Survey of LGBTQ+ people in design by Queer Design Club

40% of LGBTQ+ people in design reported having to point out design decisions that excluded queer people to their colleagues.

13% been asked to work for anti-LGBTQ+ clients

I hope you are all safe and well, friends and comrades.

Happy pride. Love and lubrication.