Queers in Pink Keffiyehs: The Motivations of Modern Radical Queer Activists

Document Type


Publication Date



In recent years, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) issues have risen in visibility to become relatively accepted as legitimate political concerns. The current policy landscape includes popular LGBT campaigns that seek to assimilate with mainstream, heterosexual cultures; gay individuals being given more legal rights; and many radical queer activists who reject gay marriage as the path to equality. Some LGBT activists are taking alternative political paths, seeking to carve out a queer space from which to resist the dominant heteronormative culture. This research looks to answer a series of related primary questions: What actions do radical queer activists engage in? What they hope to achieve through their actions? Why do they reject the more mainstream gay rights movement? This research is important as there is very little discussion in current academic literature of the modern radical queer activism that has emerged within the last decade. While not the sole cause of these activists? invisibility in the public policy landscape, the lack of coverage by academic literature aids in the silencing of the voices of this group of activists. This study seeks to fill in the gap in the literature and to understand why these activists disassociate themselves from the mainstream LGBT rights movement, as well as to get a better understanding of the demographics of modern radical queer activism.


Caroline Heldman




Walter B. Gerken Fellowship

This document is currently not available here.