OSR Journal of Student Research


Bri Lafond


The young queer characters in Truman Capote's Other Voices, Other Rooms—especially the protagonist, Joel Harrison Knox—is able to carve out a legitimate space for themselves within heteronormative society; however, they do not achieve full equality, and their fates may even be read as a reiteration of the status quo. I argue that the novel is less about individual queer actualization, but rather about establishing larger support structures for the queer community, particularly in the form of the specially chosen—or curated—family. In particular, Capote harnesses the tropes of Southern Gothicism by symbolizing family structures—both extant and burgeoning— Through a series of “haunted” houses that the queer protagonist must enter and explore.