Date of Graduation

Fall 2022


Master of Arts in English



Committee Chair

Jonathan Newman


This thesis explores conversion trauma narratives with the goal of transforming—inverting The Book of Job’s holy resolution to instead entail queer liberation apart from Evangelicalism. Analyzing Conley’s bestselling memoir, Boy Erased, I discuss Conley’s suffering and how his liberation is not found by means of repressing or converting his attraction to the same gender. I also analyze Emily Danforth’s novel, The Miseducation of Cameron Post to highlight how fictional accounts of queer liberation from conversion therapy help to increase awareness of the harms of conversion therapy. Throughout my thesis, I incorporate my own story of queer suffering, survival, and resilience. I steal away Job’s narrative for the sake of my own resolution away from church, forced masculinity, and closeted identity.


queer, conversion therapy, The Book of Job, drag artist, megachurch, worship leader, Boy Erased, The Miseducation of Cameron Post

Subject Categories

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies | Literature in English, North America | Nonfiction


© Harrison Beau Palen

Open Access