Queer theory is a perspective that values multiplicity, variability, and fluidity, with particular attention to sexual identities and gender expressions, specifically those that are not aligned with hegemonic heteronormativity—that is, straight-sexual and cisgender identities. It is valuable for those interested in informal learning environments to have some knowledge of queer theory because many queer students seek out-of-school contexts for their learning as a result of the hostility they experience in schools. Understanding queer theory can provide adults working in such contexts ways to make these contexts positive alternatives to those some queer youth experience in schools. This entry discusses queer theory in more detail, talks about the various ways in which it has been taken up in out-of-school contexts over time, and concludes with an ...

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