Reviewing CW2K: H5 and I5 QueerMoo – This Year and Next?

This year's Queer Strand offered four presentations focused on LinguaMOO's QueerMOOnity – a series of presentations I very much wanted to see had I not already promised a colleague I would attend his session, offered (alas!) at the same time. (Ah, the injustices of concurrent sessions!) Nonetheless, I was able to speak with two presenters, Walt Turner and Margee Morrison, and I got to read the text of Morrison's essay, re-titled as "The Mongoose's Always Just Vanishing Tail: Problematics of 'Safety' in QueerMOOnity Safespace."

Morrison's wonderfully rich work problematizes the notion that "Safespaces" are simply sites in which, for instance, queers can meet and discuss topics of import to them without the hassling and bigotry that so many queers still encounter IRL ("in real life"); rather, she describes the QueerMOO as a space in which participants "write transcursively, hypertextually," and in which people "reason, not with the illusions of safe text, presumedly foolproof protections and coherences of logic, but with thinking susceptible to unconscious slips and divergences and cued by memory's surreal routings." Ah, wish I'd been there. The queer perspective – and critique – needs to be brought to bear more and more on the digital world, and the work of people like Morrison deserves our attention and support.

One bit of advice, though: the Queer Strand at C&W 1999 in Rapid City also focused on the QueerMOO; and while I don't want to suggest at all that the QueerMOO is not an important site for investigating and analyzing the linkages between queer thought and digital possibility, it might be useful to supplement this with another queer strand that explores other ways in which queer insights are being used – and developed – vis--vis computers and writing.

Go To: Reviewing CW2K Home