Dr. Gina Velasco
I am currently an Assistant Professor in the Women's and Gender Studies Department at Keene State College in Keene, New Hampshire. I am also affiliated faculty in the American Studies Program. After receiving my Ph.D. from the History of Consciousness program at the University of California at Santa Cruz, I was an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Gender and Sexuality Studies Program at Bryn Mawr College from 2008-2010. From 2010-2011, I was a Visiting Assistant Professor in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, and a Visiting Scholar in the Beatrice Bain Research Group at the University of California at Berkeley. From 2012-2013, I was a visiting scholar at the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality at New York University.
My research and teaching explore how gender and queer sexuality inform notions of nation, diaspora, and transnational belonging in a contemporary context of globalization. My research, writing, and teaching encompass a range of fields, including queer studies, feminist theory, transnational feminisms, women of color feminisms, diaspora studies, ethnic studies, and Asian American/Filipina/o American studies. My writing has been published in Women and Performance: A Journal of Feminist Theory, the Review of Women's Studies, and the International Feminist Journal of Politics.
My first book manuscript, Queering the Transnational Filipina Body: Gendered and Sexual Nationalisms in the Filipino Diaspora, “queers” the ubiquitous figure of the transnational Filipina body through an analysis of this several figures of Filipina/o transnationalism - the Filipina "mail order bride," the "trafficked" woman, the Filipina/o American balikbayan (expatriate), and the cyborg - within Filipina/o American performance, video/film, and websites. Queering the Transnational Filipina Body explores the political possibilities and tensions between diasporic support for revolutionary nationalisms and feminist and queer critiques of the nation. Offering a serious consideration of the political potential of revolutionary, diasporic nationalisms as a form of resistance to U.S. imperialism and capitalist globalization, Queering the Transnational Filipina Body examines the gendered and sexual politics of representing the nation within Filipina/o diasporic cultural production.
My second project explores the relationship between nationalisms, diasporas, and queer genders and sexualities, with a focus on the performance and video art of queer artists of color in the U.S. I am currently collaborating with YaliniDream, a queer Sri Lankan American artist, on an essay that describes how nationalism, experiences of war, gender, and queer sexuality inform both the content and form of her performance art. This article uses a queer diasporic framework to examine the relationship between performance art, transnational political organizing, nationalist movements in the Filipino and Sri Lankan diasporas, and cultural work around issues of gender and queer sexuality. Given the contemporary context of an ongoing global War on Terror, both the violence and the potential of the nation as an organizing principle continue to dominate queer diasporic subjects' relationship to notions of home and belonging. In addition to multi- and trans-national attachments, queer diasporic subjects must contend with the dominant U.S. racial formation, as well as the neoliberal cultural politics of a mainstream LGBT movement in the U.S. Working within both queer communities of color in the U.S. and transnational political movements across the diaspora, queer diasporic artists and activists have a multivalent relationship to gender, sexuality, race, and nation. It is this crucible of affective and material connections that I will explore in my study of performance and video art by queer diasporic artists of color U.S.