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CURRENTS: Forrest Caskey (LLC) and Jessica Floyd (GWST)

Humanities Work Now


Performing Arts & Humanities Building : 216 and Online

Date & Time

April 26, 2023, 12:00 pm1:00 pm


The Dresher Center’s CURRENTS: Humanities Work Now lunchtime series showcases exciting new faculty work in the humanities in a dynamic and inter-disciplinary setting.

Lunch will be served at 11:30am. Masks are recommended.

A Friend of Dorothy? An Ethnographic Study of the Effects of Shifting and Disappearing Space on Camp, Queer Discourse, and Baltimore's Drag Queens
Forrest Caskey, Ph.D. Candidate, Language, Literacy, and Culture Program; Dresher Center Graduate Student Research Fellow (Spring 2023)

From Baltimore's infamous Ballroom and voguing scene to being the backdrop for Divine's stage as the "Queen of Filth," queer people and queer space are integral to Baltimore culture. In the past 15 years, queer bars, the historically safe and communal space for LGBTQ+ members, have decreased by over 40%. In an effort to keep Baltimore Queer, drag queens have been performing in traditionally heterosexual spaces. How does the linguistic landscape of 'camp' change when the spaces shift from designated queer spaces to traditionally less-queer spaces? In this presentation, Forrest Caskey will examine what is gained and what is lost in queer discourse amidst the dissolution of queer space.


The Sons of Neptune: An Erotic Current Among Sailors, the Sea, and Culture
Jessica Floyd, Instructor, Gender, Women's, + Sexuality Studies

"The Sons of Neptune" considers erotic ephemera that centers sailors, sailing, and sea life. Novellas such as Pipe Cleaner, by Dick Long, and Sailor on the Town, by Robert Owen reproduce cultural images of the sailor and sailing life that draw from folkloric interpretations of these figures and landscapes.. Grounded in research dealing with sailors and the sea as uniquely queer  Jessica Floyd will discuss the sometimes furtive registers of sailing sexuality and demonstrate how unstable figures and unstable origins generate a permissive sexual space that is as titillating as it is instructive.