"This is Not an Empty-Headed Man in a Dress": Literacy Misused, Reread and Rewritten in Soulopoliz

Eric Darnell Pritchard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This essay explores relationships between southern black queer experience, grassroots activism, and the literacies of southern culture through a case study of “Ella Mosley,” a 56-year-old black transgender woman activist living in the South. Out of the misuses of literacy—the ways oppressive agents appropriate literacy to the detriment of an individual or community—manifests a mandate and an occasion for social action, identity formation, and affirmation. The rhetorical strategies employed in Mosley's activism are linked to her literacies of southern culture and its impact on her sense of self, both of which she draws on in her resistance to anti-transgender rhetorics and policies effecting transgenders in her city, “Soulapoliz,” and throughout the United States. The essay also depicts the usefulness of literacy as a lens on everyday sites of black queer resistance and self-making.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)278-299
Number of pages22
JournalThe Southern Communication Journal
Volume74
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 28 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication

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