Daniel Monk – Reading the Queer Will

Event Date: 23 June 2011
Room 110, 43 Gordon Square
Birkbeck University of London
London WC1

 

Research in Aesthetics of Kinship and Community presents:

Daniel Monk – Reading the Queer Will

Thomas Braithwaite of Ambleside (d.1607) making his Will (oil on board),
© Abbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal, Cumbria, UK / The Bridgeman Art Library.

Drawing on literary, media sources and case-law in the UK and the USA, this paper argues that the principle of testamentary freedom provides an overlooked space for the lawful and public expression of alternative kinships and ‘deviant’ and ‘unnatural’ desires. At the same time the principle exposes sexual minorities to particular risks and represents a highly contingent space for political expression.

The paper argues that ‘queerying inheritance’ can contribute and complicate debates within socio-legal scholarship about intestacy reform and sociological scholarship on intimate and sexual citizenship and identity politics.

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