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Transforming the Ivory TowerChallenging Racism, Sexism, and Homophobia in the Academy$
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Brett C. Stockdill and Mary Yu Danico

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780824835262

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824835262.001.0001

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Striving to Be Queer

Striving to Be Queer

Challenging Inequality from Positions of Privilege

(p.66) Chapter Four Striving to Be Queer
Transforming the Ivory Tower

Michael Armato

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter presents the author's account of how he is challenging inequalities from the position of privilege that he occupies as a White, heterosexual male. He argues that that privilege obligates people to consciously struggle to take action against sexism and other forms of oppression because their silence is complicity. His analysis is relevant not only to White heterosexual men, but to all people who occupy any position of privilege. Straight academics should “strive to be queer” by undermining heteronormative ideas and confronting homophobia in their teaching, research, and activism. Whites must combat racism, and men must battle sexism. For the author, “striving to be queer” is about recognizing privilege while simultaneously undermining the categories and assumptions that buttress privilege and oppression. More than an identity, it is taking action against injustice when others turn away from it.

Keywords:   inequality, white males, heterosexual men, queer, racism, sexism, injustice

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