The reclamation of the term queer over the last several decades marked a shift in the study of sexuality from a focus on supposedly essential categories such as gay and lesbian, to more fluid notions of sexual identity. On the cutting-edge of this significant shift was Annamarie Jagose’s classic text Queer Theory: An Introduction. In this groundbreaking work, Jagose provides a clear and concise explanation of queer theory, tracing it as part of an intriguing history of same-sex love over the last century.

Blending insights from prominent theorists such as Judith Butler and David Halperin, Jagose illustrates that queer theory’s challenge is to create new ways of thinking, not only about fixed sexual identities such as straight and gay, but about other supposedly immovable notions such as sexuality and gender, and man and woman. First released almost 25 years ago, this groundbreaking work has provided a foundation for the continuing evolution of queer theory in the twenty-first century.

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Those interested in expanding their view of human sexuality and gender, a survey of the history of same-sex love in humanity, expanding the definition of the word “queer.”