a journal of queer studies

Editorial #1

InterAlia is an annual academic journal peer edited by scholars based in Poland, Germany, and the U.S. Every paper submitted goes through a double blind review process. Some sections (“Reviews” and “The Equality March Goes On”) will be updated several times a year.

Although InterAlia is bilingual—Polish and English—at this point we have no funding for translation. For the time being, then, we have to content ourselves with publishing papers in the languages in which they were written. Only two sections in this issue, “The Equality March Goes On” and “A Brief Picture-guide to the Wroclaw of Michał Witkowski's Lubiewo” will be accessible in both languages.

The target readership for InterAlia are the students, scholars and activists who are interested in queer issues and have access to the web. We have met many of them at the six queer studies conferences held in Poland since 2000. By now, several hundred committed scholars and activists from over a dozen countries have come together at our conferences—many of them more than once. Others were unable to make it because of the prohibitive costs of travel from the Kamchatka Peninsula, Bulgaria, Hungary, Rumania, and Ukraine. We hope that InterAlia will provide them with a more accessible forum than our annual conferences and we strongly encourage them to contribute. We count on our readers to use their email networks to advertise InterAlia; only through such networks can we reach beyond the current queer studies circuit.

The institutionalization of queer studies within Western—chiefly U.S.—academic structures has had obvious advantages and we should never cease to demand even more queer presence in various institutions of public life. But many would share the feeling that queer studies is past its prime and that the original, subversive impetus has been lost, giving way to a "new order" which uncannily resembles the "old" one. We have seen a queer canon solidified, queer careers established, and queer theory itself largely geared to the needs and expectations of U.S. academia. There is a growing sense that if queer studies is to survive at all, it must relocate itself into a much more de-centralized domain. We believe that queer studies should be practiced with both an emphasis on local articulations of queer identities and queer politics, and a serious engagement with processes of "globalization." The wave is out, so to speak, and queer studies continues to spread into ever new territories, geographically and academically. InterAlia's mission is exactly to bring together the most varied international (if not postnational), transdisciplinary perspectives. The project of queer studies has only just begun.

It is our hope that this electronic journal will secure a stronger place for Eastern/Central European queer studies on the map and foster the growth of queer communities. Among the issues we hope our contributors will address is the translatability of queer concepts across cultural and linguistic borders; the relationship between queer theory and activism; the possibility of reconciling the different positionings within the queer community that are related to such factors as gender, race, class, age, sexual practices, and geographical location; the relevance of queer studies for understanding the discourses, cultural practices, and institutions that surround us; and the potential of queer as a counterdiscourse or counterpractice. The next deadline for paper submissions is October 30, 2006.

InterAlia would not have seen the light of computer screens without the generosity of Stephen Tapscott, who was there at its conception, who patiently monitored its gestation, and who, we hope, now shares our satisfaction at seeing it on the web.

Tomasz Sikora
Tomasz Basiuk
Marzena Lizurej
Dominika Ferens
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