Introduction: Honoring Eve: a special issue on the work of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick
Vincent, J. Keith
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CitationMurphy, Erin and Vincent, J. Keith (2010) "Introduction," Criticism: Vol. 52: Iss. 2, Article 1, pp.159-176. Available at: http://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/criticism/vol52/iss2/1/
This special issue grew out of the event "Honoring Eve: A Symposium celebrating the Work of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick," which was held on October 31, 2009 at Boston University (BU), about six months after Sedgwick passed away on April 12, 2009. More than two hundred people came to the symposium from all over the United States and as far away as Spain and Israel. they were not just academics, but artists, musicians, writers, and many others who had been touched by Sedgwick's work. Within BU, faculty members from across the university prepared for the symposium by assigning Sedgwick's work in courses whose diversity testifies to the breadth of her influence: from "Family Trouble: Contesting Kinship In Theory And Literature" to "Japanese Popular Culture" to "Buddhism in America" and the "New Testament Seminar on Gender and Christian Origins." In honor of Sedgwick's commitment to pedagogy and activism, in the week before the event we also held two workshops at which faculty members and one hundred undergraduates gathered to discuss her essay "How to Bring Your Kids up Gay." Although this essay was written before many of these students were born, Sedgwick's fiery insistence that the existence of gay people be understood not just as a fact to be tolerated but as a "positive desideratum, a needed condition of life" remains just as powerful as when she wrote it in 1991.