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View Diary: LGBT Literature: How to be Gay (70 comments)

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  •  Fascinating but Baffling (7+ / 0-)

    I noticed the italicized phrase, men "who already are gay," and shuddered.  Shouldn't there be phraseology that makes clear he means "self-realization" of one's homosexuality rather than implying one "becomes" gay -- as if when sufficient time passes?

    My impression from your diary is that David Halperin's thesis is that gay identity, culture, outlook, and shared sense of self is largely derived from the performing arts entertainment industry rather than literature, politics, social fraternity, or shared values.  Is that accurate?

    Perhaps the latter are acquired after a more prolonged history of an open existence where access and experience accumulate to a threshold that promotes its own thinking more fully.

    Sociology is among my weaker suits; consequently, I tend to view gay men as individual men who are gay.  This may be because living in Miami has exposed me for many years to gender identities across the spectrum, so infinite in variety that it's impossible to lump them together.

    If I should be paying more attention to entertainment culture as the genesis of gay identity, outlook, and sense of self, then I think I can't go wrong to take La Cage aux Folles and it's American movie version, The Birdcage as my preferred resource -- it seems to encompass all the elements Halperin considers.

    Readers & Book Lovers Pull up a chair! You're never too old to be a Meta Groupie

    by Limelite on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 08:25:36 AM PDT

    •  I think you're correct, and there's more (5+ / 0-)

      In his whole culture/subculture discussion, I get the impression that he's more interested in the use we collectively make of the products of the performing arts industries (which is the stuff he's bad at getting) than he is in the literature, politics and shared values. Mostly, I think he doesn't think we HAVE shared values and politics (see, for example, GOProud) while we do have Sex in the City.

      I think we have to remember this is ONE professor teaching ONE course who happened to write 500 pages about his experience. I don't think I'd teach a course like this the way he did, and it has been a great springboard for discussion. Thanks for helping that along!

      -7.75, -8.10; . . . Seneca Falls, Selma and Stonewall (h/t cooper888)

      by Dave in Northridge on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 09:24:29 AM PDT

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