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How Places Make UsNovel LBQ Identities in Four Small Cities$
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Japonica Brown-Saracino

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226361116

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226361390.001.0001

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Ithaca: Integration and Post-Identity Politics

Ithaca: Integration and Post-Identity Politics

(p.21) One Ithaca: Integration and Post-Identity Politics
How Places Make Us

Japonica Brown-Saracino

University of Chicago Press

Most LBQ residents of Ithaca, NY express commitment to a kind of personhood that deemphasizes sexual identity and difference in favor of other features of the self. These residents also embrace integration with heterosexuals and a closely related sense of “ambient community” - or a general sense of welcome and belonging in the local context. Despite, their deemphasis on sexual identity and embrace of integration, they express nostalgia for lesbian identity and community, which they associate with other times and places. This experience of self and community emerges from Ithaca’s ecological context: from the abundance of LBQ residents, feelings of safety and acceptance, and a local tradition of celebrating sexual heterogeneity.

Keywords:   ambient community, post-identity politics, nostalgia, community, identity, lesbian, queer, integration, ties, ecology

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