Bowie State to Offer Queer Studies Course

Bowie State University will offer an academic course on Queer culture during the 2016-17 academic year.

The Human Rights Commission reports on the new academic offering, as a part of BSU’s continuing development as an LGBT-inclusive campus community. Bowie State, the oldest historically black college in Maryland which opened the nation’s first black college campus gender and sexual diversities center in 2012, will be the latest HBCU to offer an elective course in LGBT culture or theory, following Morehouse College’s Black LGBT genealogy class launch in 2013, and the first academic offering at Spelman College in 2006. From the HRC press release:

The course offers an introduction to queer theory within the context of cultural studies including but not limited to the academic analysis of literature, music, film, social media, the Internet, theatre, politics, sociology and history. Using queer as an inclusive umbrella term for LGBT and ally, this class examines how society negotiates identities based on gender identity and sexual orientation in relationship with constructions of race, religion and class.

The pilot course attracted 26 students, according to the HRC.

*Correction*  A previous version of this post indicated Morehouse College as the first HBCU to offer a Queer theory course in 2013. Spelman College offered the first historically black Queer theory course in 2006. We apologize for the error.

4 comments
  1. Spelman college’s women’s studies program offered the first queer theory course not Morehouse College. We are also the first hbcu with a tenure track faculty line in queer studies. Just want to get this history straight.

    Beverly Guy-Sheftall
    Chair, Women’s Studies
    Spelman College

    1. Thank you so much for the correction, Dr. Sheftall. It has been updated to reflect the correct information and citation. I apologize for the error.

      1. Thanks Jarrett. When Morehouse offered their course for the first time, they indicated that they were the first HBCU to offer a queer studies course, not realizing that Spelman had already offered such a course some years prior and this narrative continued, so we are pleased that a more accurate history is emerging.

  2. I am not a fan, but I completely understand the academic side and research in this area is necessary. I am even more proud to see another HBCU leading the way.

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