Theory-Practice Collaboratory #4: Queering Digitality
Friday, December 12, 10:00am-3:00pm
Elvehjem L166

A mini-symposium featuring two dynamic participatory workshops at the intersection of creative writing, digital studies, and queer theory.


Megan Milks, “Open Channels:  Slash Aesthetics and Queer Affect”
10:00am – 12:00pm



Stacia Yeapanis, “Willow Rosenberg” from Everybody Hurts series


Slash fiction: a genre of fan fiction that stages queer sexual encounters between characters from popular sources (and, sometimes, real people celebrities). This workshop stages a queer encounter between slash fiction and conceptual writing to theorize slash as a (post?)conceptual queer appropriative practice, one that is interested more in performance, embodiment, and channeling—in various forms of becoming—than in straight critique. Examining both fictional and poetic examples of slash aesthetics, including Michael du Plessis’s The Memoirs of JonBenet by Kathy Acker, Sarah Dowling’s Down, and Leon Baham’s Ponyboy, Sigh, we will investigate slash as both a revisionary tool and a site of queer affect—and desire. Then we will try our hand at our own slash productions, which will involve a series of writing machines based on slashfic. Featuring appearances from the Pretty Little Liars, Aaliyah, One Direction, and more.

RSVP Required.  To RSVP and receive advance reading, email art.scholarship.mellon@gmail.com no later than Wednesday, Dec. 10.



MEGAN MILKS is the author of Kill Marguerite and Other Stories (Emergency Press, 2014) and the chapbook Twins (Birds of Lace, 2012), which enlists the Sweet Valley Twins in a choose your own adventure. Her fiction has been published in three volumes of innovative writing as well as many journals. She is co-editor of the volume Asexualities: Feminist and Queer Perspectives (Routledge, 2014) and editor of The &NOW Awards 3: The Best Innovative Writing, 2011-2013. She teaches creative writing, journalism, and literature at Beloit College.


[12:00 – 1:00:  Lunch/Break]


Oliver Bendorf, “Gender as a Moving Image”
1:00pm – 3:00pm


‘Moving image,’ ‘sequential art,’ ‘stop-motion animation,’ ‘graphic narrative’—it’s no wonder W.J.T. Mitchell asks, “Why is it not enough to say that the images move?” What if it were enough to say that gender moves? There are as many ways to make gender move as there are to make an image move, and we will draw, cut, paste, flipbook, narrate, rewind, remix, time-lapse, and animate our way through them. How does your gender move? What happens between the still frames? How does it maintain the illusion of a continuous sequence—or does it not? Creative practice and queer theory unite in this collective experiment to consider gender as a moving image technology of the body. No drawing or animation skills necessary but you must be willing to do both anyway.

RSVP Required.  To RSVP and receive advance reading, email art.scholarship.mellon@gmail.com no later than Wednesday, Dec. 10.



OLIVER BENDORF is a writer, artist, theorist, teacher, and the author of The Spectral Wilderness (Kent State University Press), winner of the 2013 Wick Prize in Poetry. He holds an MFA in poetry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he is now an MA candidate in Library & Information Studies. He has received fellowships from University of Wisconsin-Madison, Lambda Literary Foundation, and Vermont Studio Center, and his poetry has been anthologized in Best New Poets and Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics. His interests include color, gender, image-text, the digital, and the human hand.


This event is presented by the Art + Scholarship A.W. Mellon Workshop, generously supported by UW-Madison Center for the Humanities, and co-sponsored by the School of Library and Information Studies and the LGBT Campus Center.




Facilitating conversations between experimental scholarship, creative writing, performance, new media, digital text, and visualization studies, Art + Scholarship A.W. Mellon Workshop’s Theory-Practice Collaboratories engage a richly interdisciplinary nexus of questions, practices, and possibilities for unsettling generic and medium-specific boundaries.  Collaboratories provide opportunities to engage in collective exploration of playful, creative scholarship through such practices as performance-making, sensory awareness, digital remediation, public discourse, and relational aesthetics.  

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