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Queer nuns : religion, activism, and serious parody

Author: Melissa M Wilcox
Publisher: New York : New York University Press, [2018] ©2018
Series: Sexual cultures.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
This book looks into the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, queer activists devoted to social justice. The unlikely order of nuns,self-described as "twenty-first century queer nuns," began in 1979 when three bored gay men donned retired Roman Catholic nuns' habits and went for a stroll through San Francisco's gay Castro district. The stunned and delighted responses they received prompted these already-seasoned  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Melissa M Wilcox
ISBN: 9781479864133 1479864137 9781479820368 1479820369
OCLC Number: 1006798316
Description: xx, 289 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm.
Contents: Introduction: "Modern-day badass drag queen superhero nuns" --
"It was like this asteroid belt": the origins and growth of the sisters --
"We ARE nuns, silly!": serious parody as activism --
"A sacred, powerful woman": complicating gender --
"Sister outsiders": navigating whiteness --
"A secular nun": serious parody and the sacred --
Conclusion: New world order? --
Appendix A. Blooper reel --
Appendix B. Studying the sisters.
Series Title: Sexual cultures.
Responsibility: Melissa M. Wilcox.

Abstract:

This book looks into the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, queer activists devoted to social justice. The unlikely order of nuns,self-described as "twenty-first century queer nuns," began in 1979 when three bored gay men donned retired Roman Catholic nuns' habits and went for a stroll through San Francisco's gay Castro district. The stunned and delighted responses they received prompted these already-seasoned activists to consider whether the habits might have some use in social justice work, and within a year they had constituted the new order. Today, with more than 83 houses on four different continents, the Sisters offer health outreach, support, and, at times, protest on behalf of queer communities. This book looks at the role the Sisters play across queer culture and the religious landscape. The Sisters both spoof nuns and argue quite seriously that they are nuns, adopting an innovative approach the author refers to as serious parody. Like any performance, serious parody can either challenge or reinforce existing power dynamics, and it often accomplishes both simultaneously. The book demonstrates that, through the use of this strategy, the Sisters are able to offer an effective, flexible, and noteworthy approach to community-based activism.

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Wilcox beautifully demonstrates how serious political and social engagement can emerge from queer religious camp. In short, this book piles fascinating and novel theoretical engagement upon great Read more...

 
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