Paper Title

Softball Bats and Bar Stools: The Emergence of Queer Aggression in the South of the early 1900’s

Location

Room 221, DiGiorgio Campus Center (DiGs)

Start Date

April 2016

End Date

April 2016

Keywords

queer, aggression, history, softball, bars, fighting, identity, power, maintenance, safe space

Abstract

The creation and maintenance of spaces for LGBTQ individuals during the early 1900’s in the south were few and far between. Much of the nation was in transition and a new era was fast approaching. Society and culture created around World War II brought more people into the cities creating communities for queer individuals and the ability to discuss and understand. For some this might’ve been the first time they would be exposed to queer culture and other individuals. Through softball fields and bars we see the emergence and maintenance of spaces for LGBTQ individuals within the understanding of class and the imposition of our nation’s patriarchal structure. Through these connections the understanding of aggression is used as a tool in expression of one’s identity and to create and maintain a hierarchal structure. This manifests in the need to prove one’s identity in a physical sense with the use of fighting and physical intimidation. This is exemplified with the use of bar fights to maintain power and control. The connection of softball and lesbian bars is a site for feminism through women-centric/women-focused community building, sexual identity affirmation, liberation from male gaze and male authority, and a means of expressing aggression.

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This paper is not finished and will be expanding upon a paper I have already written.

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Apr 1st, 9:00 AM Apr 1st, 10:15 AM

Softball Bats and Bar Stools: The Emergence of Queer Aggression in the South of the early 1900’s

Room 221, DiGiorgio Campus Center (DiGs)

The creation and maintenance of spaces for LGBTQ individuals during the early 1900’s in the south were few and far between. Much of the nation was in transition and a new era was fast approaching. Society and culture created around World War II brought more people into the cities creating communities for queer individuals and the ability to discuss and understand. For some this might’ve been the first time they would be exposed to queer culture and other individuals. Through softball fields and bars we see the emergence and maintenance of spaces for LGBTQ individuals within the understanding of class and the imposition of our nation’s patriarchal structure. Through these connections the understanding of aggression is used as a tool in expression of one’s identity and to create and maintain a hierarchal structure. This manifests in the need to prove one’s identity in a physical sense with the use of fighting and physical intimidation. This is exemplified with the use of bar fights to maintain power and control. The connection of softball and lesbian bars is a site for feminism through women-centric/women-focused community building, sexual identity affirmation, liberation from male gaze and male authority, and a means of expressing aggression.