A new academic journal is scheduled to publish next year that will attempt to oppose the notion that religions such as Christianity, Judaism, and Buddhism do not accept trans and queer individuals.
The journal, QTR: A Journal of Queer and Transgender Studies in Religion, is set to publish in 2023. Even though religion has often been seen as being at odds with the trans and queer community, the fact remains that a large number of trans and queer individuals consider themselves as religious.
“When we say a particular religion hates queer people, we’re erasing the queer people in that religion,” said Melissa M. Wilcox, a religious studies professor at the University of California at Riverside, who launching the journal. “We’re reducing it to one particular take or one particular branch and to a certain set of elites who have claimed the right to say what they want by silencing everyone else.”
“QTR: A Journal of Queer and Transgender Studies in Religion,” is set to publish in 2023 and will explore Christianity, Buddhism, Jewish communities and other faith groups through a queer and trans studies lens. It will feature queer and trans approaches to sacred texts as well as ways trans and queer people have created their own religious spaces.
Joseph Marchal, a religious studies professor at Ball State University in Indiana, said that while some people have used religious arguments to target queer and trans people, “many queer and trans people are religious and find community and affirmation in religions.”
“There’s an assumption that to be religious is to be hostile to thinking about gender and sexuality and specifically thinking about queer and trans people,” said Marchal, who is launching the journal.
“It’s just so clear that when we think about gender and sexuality and religion, the world needs better, more informed knowledge about those things,” he added.
In addition to the academic journal, the project will also include a Website highlighting poetry, fiction, and audio content.
Wilcox said she believes that the journal will have a major and positive impact on the lives of the trans and queer people.
“This work saves lives,” Wilcox said. “Anybody just Googling to find out who is out there like me or is there space for me in this religion will be able to find the work collected in this journal.”
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