"Gender and sexuality are historical and theoretical categories, made and made again by the shifting complexities of our culture."
"Teaching Victorian literature and culture through the lens of Queer Theory is about productively defamiliarizing things we think are stable: neither Victorians nor sexuality are what they seem. Queer Theory is a field that has addressed the terms of its emergence and the history of its disavowal with great intellectual agility. It is less about identity and more a study of identity production, less about determining who or what we are, than it is about theorizing displacement. We are taught to regard gender and sexuality as stable, certain and universal: our job as scholars is to counter that miseducation with surprising histories, ebullient fictions and stubborn detail."
Associate Professor of English
Note: Kate Thomas, a scholar of 19th-century British literature and culture, teaches a course on Victorian food culture that focuses on the relationship of food to nineteenth-century colonial and imperial discourse, analyzing how food both traces and guides global networks of power, politics, and trade.