chapter  21
11 Pages

From Websites to Wal-Mart: Youth, Identity Work, and the Queering of Boundary Publics in Small Town, USA


Shaun was the first to arrive at the donut shop attached to the Gas-n’-Go. It was a popular spot among young people in this town of 3,000 tucked between eastern Kentucky’s deep ravines and rolling hills.2 He was there to meet with other members of the Highland Pride Alliance (HPA), an informal group of area lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth and their allies.White, gay-identifying men between 17 and 22 dominated HPA’s leadership.While fewer than 10 members regularly attended its organizational meetings, more than 30 regularly participated in HPA’s monthly activities and posted messages to its website guestbook. HPA usually held their monthly meetings in the basement of the county public library but another community group had already booked the space.