Issue 24.5: The Queer Art of Failure

Bo Eberle

Who Can Forget? Halberstam’s Critique of Memory in Ferguson

While Halberstam’s articulation of the concept of “queer forgetfulness” is rich and widely applicable, we may not want to be too quick to assume that forgetfulness can function as a normative concept. In respect to economically marginalized groups, such as African Americans in the United States, forgetting and forming the new kinds of queer kinship bonds Halberstam speaks about may simply be impossible. Within certain minority groups family bonds and the memory of the past may well be necessary for survival and act as the material through which creative transformation of the past emerges.