University hosts 'Queer Research Day' to 'challenge normalcy'

Toni Airaksinen
New York Campus Correspondent

  • Kennesaw State University will soon offer a conference on "queer research" hosted by the school's LGBTQ Student Programs Office, which recently turned heads for telling students that "ne" and "ve" are gender-neutral pronouns.
  • According to a conference description, attendees will have the opportunity to share their "queer research" and explain how they are "addressing queerness" in their work.
  • After telling students that “ne” and “ve” are gender-neutral pronouns, one university will soon host an all-day conference promoting “queer research.”

    Queer Research Day” will take place at Kennesaw State University (KSU) on April 13, and will include workshops such as “An Exploration of Queer Representations in Fairytales” as well as “Queer Developmental Approaches to Working With Young People.” 

    "How can we challenge normalcy, and indeed, live, study, and think through queer’s impossibilities and nuances?"   

    Other workshops will explore issues such as “Queering Bookstores: A Case Study,” “Queering Activism: The Emergence of Queer Service Organizations in Toronto,” and “Queer Advocacy: The Personal is Political.” 

    [RELATED: College offering professors $10k for ‘feminist research’]

    The description for Queer Research Day explains that its goal is to “challenge normalcy” while offering scholars a chance to share how they are “addressing querness” in their work. 

    “In light of the radical potential of queer—as theories, identities, politics, and communities—how can we challenge normalcy, and indeed, live, study, and think through queer’s impossibilities and nuances,” the agenda prompts participants, adding that the conference will be a great opportunity for students and professors to “share our queer research.” 

    The conference is organized by the school’s LGBTQ Student Programs Office, which recently distributed pamphlets explaining the use of pronouns such as “ne,” “ve,” “ey,” “ze” and “xe,” as reported by Campus Reform

    Notably, KSU has since added a disclaimer to that guide clarifying that it is not the school's official policy.

    “The content contained within the pamphlet is not reflective of University policy,” the revised disclaimer notes in small font, adding that is merely intended for students “interested in learning more about various aspects of LGBTQ identities and experiences.” 

    [RELATED: Stanford hiring admin to teach profs about ‘implicit bias’] 

    Additionally, the university was recently hit with two lawsuits from conservative-leaning students. 

    In February, the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed a lawsuit against KSU on behalf of Ratio Christi, a Christian student group that claims administrators repeatedly confined its expressive activities to a “free speech zone” representing just 0.08 percent of the campus.

    Just a month later, ADF filed another lawsuit against KSU, alleging that the school’s Young Americans for Freedom chapter incurred unconstitutional “security fees” after inviting conservative commentator Katie Pavlich to campus. 

    Campus Reform reached out to KSU for comment on how Queer Research Day is funded, but the school did not respond to multiple requests. 

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @Toni_Airaksinen





    Toni Airaksinen

    Toni Airaksinen

    New York Campus Correspondent
    Toni Airaksinen is a New York Campus Correspondent, where she reports on free speech issues and social justice research. She is a senior at Barnard College, majoring in Urban Studies and Environmental Science. She is also a columnist for PJ Media, and formerly held a post with USA TODAY College, The Columbia Spectator, and Quillette.
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