Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Women's Studies and Gender Studies


Relationships play an important role in both the private and public spheres of our lives. If we understand our bodies to be the vessels through which we interact with all other objects, we come to understand the process of world-making as a summation of our relationships. Intimacy is the prevailing structure that helps assign meaning to these relationships. Intimacy binds together unfixed spatial and social relations that stretch across time and space. This essay examines the three intersecting sets of relations involved in intimacy as a means to deconstruct heteropatriarchal order and highlight the multiplicity of attachments and relationships that we each experience throughout our lives. Specifically, I analyze the power relations that have bound violence to black bodies and how these relations continue to fracture a sense of black belonging in the U.S. Examining the continued brutalization and murder of black bodies by institutions of power, I will explore the potential for intimacy to be used as a liberatory practice of activism that binds our every-day life to the realities of institutionalized U.S. social, political, and cultural violence.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.