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Queer Theory and Its Future in Psychology: Exploring Issues of Race Privilege



Queer theory is increasingly making an impact on the discipline of psychology in the UK and elsewhere, both in the form of those who explicitly use queer theory, and those who exhibit a queer sensibility. Yet, it has been suggested, queer theorising more broadly has largely neglected to account for its racial politics, an issue that holds ongoing relevance for its application across disciplines. In this paper, I outline six key areas requiring further attention in regards to the growing use of queer theory within psychology: (i) a greater recognition of the histories on which queer theory builds, (ii) an understanding of how racial hierarchies shape accounts of individualism and universalism, (iii) a continued focus on the operations of a racialised queer desire, (iv) an investigation of the implication of critiques of essentialism, (v) ongoing explorations of language use within queer theorising, and (vi) greater acknowledgement of tensions within queer community building. These six points provide new avenues of consideration for those already in the field, and will encourage those new to the field to explore its unnamed assumptions.