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ISSUE 63 — SPRING 2024

In the introduction of Queer Ecologies: Sex, Nature, Politics, Desire, Catriona Sandilands and Bruce Erikson argue that “white men came to assert their increasingly heterosexual identities in the wilderness explicitly against the urban specter of the queer, the immigrant, and the communist, a legion of feminized men who were clearly not of the same manly caliber as the likes of Theodore Roosevelt”


This issue of Antennae, and the one that will follow in July, is part of a diptych dedicated to new advances in Queer Ecology and the arts. As a field of studies, Queer Ecology emerged in the mid 1990s from the intersection of Eco-criticism with Queer Theory. Highly concerned with the relentless erasure of queer behaviours operated by science and natural history, Queer Ecologies focuses on the relentless deconstruction of the conception of “nature” as formulated in Western culture; it challenges the dualistic ways of thinking that separates nature from culture, and human from other earthlings. Ultimately, it critiques heteronormative constructs of nature and sexuality as not only socially divisive but also ecologically damaging.


Queer Ecology ultimately embraces the biological fluidity and uncontainable exuberance of more-than-human worlds to craft new thinking modalities, plateaus, and blue-prints through which to reconfigure inherited normative notions and map new epistemological territories. The all-important concept of 'queer nature' acknowledges that many more-than-human earthlings engage in queer behaviours, challenging the heteronormative assumptions that have been handed down to us by science and natural history. Queer ecology thus critiques the anthropocentrism in environmental discourse and advocates for a more inclusive and diverse understanding of ecologies for our time. In brief, Queer Ecology, instigates a radical reconsideration of every truth that patriarchy has passed down to us. Not only it is one of the most vibrant and creative contemporary field of inquiry, but it doubtlessly is also is one of the most urgent.

Dr. Giovanni Aloi
Editor in Chief

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in this issue

Elena Antoniolli 

Gianlorenzo Chiaraluce 

Remina Greenfield 
Justyna Górowska

Thomas Hughes 

Ewelina Jarosz
Ross McBee

Emma Merkling 

Benedetta Panisson
Barney Pau 
Agnes Questionmark 

Ëpha Roe 

D Rosen

Catriona Sandilands 
Regan Shrumm

Annie Sprinkle

Beth Stephens 

Making a splash: when ecosexual and hydrosexual

unite in conversation


text & images: Beth Stephens, Justyna Górowska, Ewelina Jarosz & Annie Sprinkle


Beth Stephens, Justyna Górowska, Ewelina Jarosz & Annie Sprinkle are nature loving artists, activists and educators. In this conversation they discuss their original and pioneering work. The hydrosexuals, Ewelina and Justyna, live in Poland, and the ecosexuals, Beth and Annie, are in San Francisco.

Ser rural es mes sexual! Queering the natural, the social, and the lexical


text & images: Barney Pau


Domestication is a means of

control with many definitions. The essay’s title comes from
a graffitied sign in the Catalan Pyrenees, and opens a discussion about domestication’s control. This is outlined in an inquiry into the rela- tivity of the following three examples: reductivist plant breeding; ‘repro-centrism’; and the lexicon of classification.

Sexual exorbitance
in island and sea scapes

In this image-essay Benedetta

Panisson argues that re-creating museum visualities of animal sexualities by crossing a queer, feminist and interdisciplinary gaze, accompanies children’s and adults’ eyes not only to the perception wonder of what we consider as extra-ordinary, but also to get used to it, towards non-heteronormative imaginaries, building a less suspicious, more aware and relaxed intimacy.


text and images: Benedetta Panisson

Grasping the (Queer) Nettle


text and images: Catriona Sandilands

Nettles are extraordinary in their generosity, offering food, fiber, and medicine to people all over the world for millennia. In many contexts, they are also considered undesirable, invasive weeds.

Thinking-with dead wood


text and images: Elena Antoniolli

The idea of a queer ecology applied to dying trees offers a trans-ness representation of urban nature. Senescent trees play a key role in the ecology of recycling nutrients and include emblematic examples of non- heteronormative behaviors such as the intersexuality of beetles or the hermaphroditism of earthworms and snails.

Qu(e)ercus robur: Orlando and the oak tree


text: Ëpha Roe

This essay examines the presence of the oak tree within Virginia Woolf’s novel Orlando through a queer ecology lens. Woolf’s positioning of the natural world can be an example of queer ecological frameworks that reveal and consider not just the queer nature of the novel, but indeed the queerness of nature within it.


of an octopus artist


text: Gianlorenzo Chiaraluce

images: Agnes Questionmark


Agnes Questionmark employs long-lasting performance as means of identity exploration
and reconfiguration of an unprecedented hybrid creature. Focusing on some of these actions as examples, this essay explores how the artist has engaged

with organic posthumanism, environmental issues, feminist and queer theories to propose her own vision of nature.

Queer Darwin,
plant-human entanglements,
and aestheticist art


text: Thomas Hughes and Emma Merkling

This essay explores how English

Aestheticist Art of the 1870s drew inspiration from Charles Darwin to generate early visualisations of queer ecologies. Julia Margaret Cameron, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and Edward Burne-Jones were attuned to Darwin’s queer undercurrents—including

a generative unsettling of straight

feathers in the machine


text: Remina Greenfield and Ross McBee

In this essay, the authors adpot a refined definition of autopoiesis that emphasizes the dynamic interplay between self-creation and external influences in living systems. Building upon this
idea of dynamic, situated “self- creation” they examine the role of aesthetic preference in evolution as a challenge to adaptationist narratives of mechanistically optimized, predictable, and linear evolutionary progress.

Queer ecology
in the Pacific Northwest


text: Regan Shrumm

Through examining the practices
of Alexis Hogan, Tiffany Joseph, and Yahlnaaw, author Regan Shrumm provides some theories on what makes this land so special and how using queer ecology methodologies can help steer us through a more hopeful future with our climate crisis.

Gorgets: trans hummingbirds and iridescent echos


text & images: D Rosen

Gorgets are the plumage lining the throats of trans Sun-Angel Hummingbirds that spurred an essay and sculpture. Gorgets thinks with flower-guarding trans hummingbirds using an intersectional assemblage of queer theory to examine the linguistic fashioning of gendered categories.


"My nickname is ‘Underwater_activist.’ I’m a queer lesbian. Water has always been the love of my life. It was always prioritized even before my female partners."

Beth Stephens, p 15

"Artistic and queer lenses can often provide a fluidity and adaptability that better reflects the interconnect-edness of nature...​bringing in queer and Indigiqueer ecology can shape much more just the environment."

Regan Shrumm, p 142

"That the full extent of the generosity of nettles is recognized by Indigenous peoples and not by extrac- tive colonialism is hardly surprising. What is more interesting is, however, that the queerness of this nettle generosity is an important part of their global story."

Laura Catriona, p 176

"Darwin’s writings in the 1860s–70s exhibit a fascination with biology that moves beyond the gender binary into ‘hermaphro-dit[ism] or androgyn[y]’ and — especially in relation to plants"

Thomas Hughes and Emma Merkling, p 110

p 16
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