Queer Ecologies Research Cluster

The Queer Ecology Research Cluster meets every other week to investigate how sexuality and concepts of nature have been historically linked. In particular, we are interested in how evolutionary and ecological science has informed what is "natural" and how we use this information to delineate certain sexual behaviors as normal or aberrant. Queer Ecologies seeks to examine the historical making of the natural as it relates to sexuality while communicating the overwhelming diversity of sex and gender in biology.

*This event has passed, thanks for coming out!*
Title: First Friday at the SEC - Jessica Kendall-Bar
When: Friday, August 3rd, 4 PM - 7 PM
Where: Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Exploration Center, 35 Pacific Av, Santa Cruz, California 95060
Description: Dive Into the kelp forests of NOAA's Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary! Featuring artwork by Jessica Kendall-Bar, come take a "virtual dive" in a kelp forest, explore marine mammal adaptations, take home your own DIY kelp print (bring a cotton tee shirt or bag!), and get to know local artist and marine mammal biologist Jessica Kendall-Bar.
More about the Artist: Jessica Kendall-Bar is a scientist by training, in her first-year of a PhD program at UC Santa Cruz, where she studies neuroscience in marine mammals. However, Jessica believes that scientific progress is futile unless communicated successfully. Jessica’s illustrations, photography, and cinematography aim to accurately portray science and its role in preserving the underwater ecosystem. She creatively depicts underwater organisms in imaginative illustrations as well as immersive underwater photography. At the interface of science and art, Jessica endeavors not only to make meaningful discoveries, but also to convey those results broadly and creatively to impact diverse populations within and outside of academia. https://www.jessiekb.com/

This is a FREE event, Friday, August 3 from 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM. For more information email: explorationcenter@noaa.gov or call 831-421-9993.

- Finding Marla. This project, Finding Marla, is a reimagination of Finding Nemo through a Queer lens. In reality, off the big screen, clownfish like Nemo and Marlin are sequential hermaphrodites and transform from male to female when the matriarch of their colony is removed, such as by death. Once Nemo's Mother had left, Marlin, being the next biggest fish in the colony, would have transitioned to become the female matriarch. How would we tell the story of Marlin's transformation? What would the story of Finding Nemo look like through this queer biological lens? And, how can we use biology in nature to represent diversity in humans? Finding Marla will tell the story of Marlin's transition from fatherhood to motherhood. If biology is a form of storytelling that helps us understand ourselves and the world around us, how will we re-imagine our own sex and gender expressions from learning about Marlin's, or rather, Marla's story? This project is funded by the Norris Center Science and Art Residency Program and the Santa Cruz Arts Council Create Grant.
- Genetics of Sex Determination
- On the Natural, Raed will work with Helem, an LGBTQ-rights organization based in Lebanon, working towards a documentary film, called On the Natural. The film will question the concept of "natural" in Raed's hometown of Tripoli, Lebanon, where homosexuality is criminalized as an act against "the order of nature". Raed is funded as a 2018 Human Rights Center Fellow. More information can be found here.

- Chen, Mel Y., and Dana Luciano, eds. Queer Inhumanisms. Duke University Press, 2015.
- Roughgarden, Joan. Evolution's rainbow: Diversity, gender, and sexuality in nature and people. Univ of California Press, 2013.
- Mortimer-Sandilands, Catriona, and Bruce Erickson. Queer ecologies: Sex, nature, politics, desire. Indiana University Press, 2010.

- Roy, Deboleena. "Neuroscience and Feminist Theory: A New Directions Essay." Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 41.3 (2016): 531-552.

- Alaimo, Stacy. "Eluding capture: The science, culture, and pleasure of 'queer' animals." Queer ecologies: Sex, nature, politics, desire (2010): 51-72.

- Wynter, Sylvia, Mercedes Durán-Cogan, and Antonio Gómez-Moriana. "Towards the Sociogenic Principle: Fanon, The Puzzle of Conscious Experience , of 'Identity' and What it's Like to be 'Black'." National Identity and Socio Political Change: Latin America Between Marginalisation and Integration (1999) .
- Fanon, Frantz. "1 The Fact of Blackness." Postcolonial Studies: An Anthology (2015): 15.

- Luciano, Dana, and Mel Y. Chen. "Introduction: Has the Queer Ever Been Human?." GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 21.2 (2015): iv-207. Dossier, The orizing Queer Inhumaninms
-Muñoz, José Esteban. "Theorizing Queer Inhumanisms: The Sense of Brownness." GLQ: a journal of lesbian and gay studies 21.2 (2015): 209-210.
- Ahuja, Neel. "Intimate Atmospheres Queer Theory in a Time of Extinctions." GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 21.2-3 (2015): 365-385.

- McWhorter, Ladelle. "Enemy of the Species." Queer Ecologies: Sex, Nature, Politics, Desire (2010): 73-101.

To do:
- The Real World of Technology, Dr. Ursula Franklin
- Feminism and the Critique of Scientific Method, Margaret Benston
  • Formulating questions of science within a context of community.

    - Watsonville Youth Group of The Diversity Center of Santa Cruz County, "Finding Marla". March 2018. Workshop
    - Santa Cruz Youth Group of The Diversity Center of Santa Cruz County, "Finding Marla". February 2018. Workshop.
    - Brain, Mind, Consciousness Society Speaker Series. February 2018. Presentation
    - University of Santa Cruz, "Research Justice 101: Tools for Feminist Science". January 2018. Workshop. Read about it!
    - Queer U at the University of British Columbia, "Sex and Gender Diversity in Nature". March 2017. Presentation.
    - Brain, Mind, Consciousness Society Speaker Series, "Sex and Gender Diversity in Nature". April 2017. Presentation.
    - The Diversity Center of Santa Cruz County, "Sex and Gender Diversity in Nature". October 2017. Presentation.