Date of Award


Degree Name



College of Liberal Arts

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Margaret Sullivan, Committee Chairperson

Second Advisor

Dr. Kristen Lillvis

Third Advisor

Dr. Sarah Chavez

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Daniel Lewis


Queer studies today has seen a rise in analysis of the trans subject. While previous research has focused on the queer body and on the term queer, my interest in trans studies is in the form and function of language. That focus on the structures of language is what underlies this thesis. My claim is that queering language is visible in the authors I cover in the form of what I call trans-poetics. I focus on keri edwards’ succubus in my pocket and Moss Angel’s Sea-Witch Volume 1. In edwards, I locate a displaced “I” and thus a displaced subjectivity that actually escapes the process of identity construction. For Angel, I consider her work as the disruption of the disturbance of meaning as we understand it in relationship to the binary system of categorization. Drawing on Maurice Blanchot’s thought of the Outside, I make the point that trans-poetics is not just poststructuralist in its moves and configurations, it is queer; it functions as a sign of that which is neither one nor the other. In sum, through trans-poetics I offer a new perspective on linguistic strategies, a meddling in normative identities, and thus an enhanced perspective on the trans experience.


Edwards, Kari. Succubus in my pocket -- Criticism and interpretation.

Woods, Sara, 1984- Sea-witch -- Criticism and interpretation.

Homosexuality in literature.

Queer theory.