Forthcoming chapter in
Gender in an Era of
Post-truth Populism

(Bloomsbury, edited by Akane Kanai
and Evangeline Stanford). Authors

Alyson Campbell

Stephen Farrier

Hannah McCann

Meta Cohen

This chapter explores how ‘feral pedagogies’ can be deployed as a methodology and means of de-domesticating feminist queer knowledges and re-wilding the nexus of academic and queer community practice. Here we define feral as “the domesticated gone wild”, to refer to taking queer theory out of the academy and back into the streets. The conceptual approach of feral pedagogies is particularly significant for the queer community because so many queer-identifying people have felt excluded or alienated from mainstream education, and yet have embodied knowledge of queer identity and life. Through the vehicle of queer performance and its impact on the wellbeing of queer communities, we look at the possibilities for taking theory out of the elite environment of the university and directly into community environments to facilitate new, peer-to-peer, ways to think about feminist queer experience. Discussion here is focused on a series of events held in Belfast, North of Ireland and Melbourne Australia we call Feral Queer Camp. In particular we look at how live theatre/performance plays a part in creating queer communities and how queer-identified people are sustained by them and argue that ‘going feral’ is an aspirational pedagogical practice that can only ever be both flawed and partial, but is nonetheless valuable.

The Feral Queer Camp is supported by the Creativity and Wellbeing Research Initiative and The Victorian College of the Arts - The University of Melbourne; and Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.