Interweaving the narratives of multiple family members, including parents and siblings of her queer and trans informants, Amy Brainer analyzes the strategies that families use to navigate their internal differences. In Queer Kinship and Family Change in Taiwan, Brainer looks across generational cohorts for clues about how larger social, cultural, and political shifts have materialized in people’s everyday lives. Her findings bring light to new parenting and family discourses and enduring inequalities that shape the experiences of queer and heterosexual kin alike.
Brainer’s research takes her from political marches and support group meetings to family dinner tables in cities and small towns across Taiwan. She speaks with parents and siblings who vary in whether and to what extent they have made peace with having a queer or transgender family member, and queer and trans people who vary in what they hope for and expect from their families of origin. Across these diverse life stories, Brainer uses a feminist materialist framework to illuminate struggles for personal and sexual autonomy in the intimate context of family and home.