Sensual Excess: Queer Femininity and Brown Jouissance (NYU Press, 2018) uses sensation, excess, and eroticism to discuss the politics of aesthetics. The project is organized around close readings of works of art by women of color, including Mickalene Thomas’ Origin of the Universe, Kara Walker’s A Subtlety, Nao Bustamente’s Neapolitan, and Patty Chang’s In Love. Though these pieces vary in scale and form, the book argues that these artists help us to reconceptualize our understandings of sexuality and difference by foregrounding femininity and brownness.

Amber Musser’s writing focuses on the intersection of aesthetics, sexuality, and race within queer and feminist theory. She has taught at Washington University in St. Louis since 2013 in the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Department, as well as in the Performing Arts Department and American Cultural Studies Program. She is the author of Sensational Flesh: Race, Power, and Masochism (New York University Press, 2014).