Epistemological Opacity and a Queer Relational Jouissance

Dean Brink*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article critically situates queer theory and writings on bisexuality in light of the author's experience of orientation fluidity while emigrating from the United States to Taiwan. It suggests that identity, or even identification, may be too limiting to describe community support for relationships within a spectrum ranging from precarious to overdetermined. Focusing on the socioromantic contextualization of embodied jouissance within supportive communities, it explores how the local politics of relationality might provide a sociocultural model for understanding a more radical queerness than essentialist or constructivist models offer. In an era when being openly gay or lesbian may have become broadly accepted, what matters is not performing a consolidated subject policed by conventions of straight/gay/lesbian boundaries, but how one situates relations with others and how one responds to one another in all senses: as potential friends, professional associates, as well as romantic or sexual partners, in light of a sense of cosmopolitan queerness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)468-483
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Bisexuality
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2016


  • biphobia
  • bisexuality
  • college/university
  • identity
  • pansexual
  • queer theory
  • relationships
  • sexual categorization
  • sexual orientation

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