Making Things Perfectly Queer: Interpreting Mass Culture

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U of Minnesota Press

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Contents

Theres Something Queer Here
1
Whose Text Is It Anyway? Queer CultureQueer Auteurs and Queer Authorship
17
I Love Laverne and Shirley Lesbian Narratives Queer P1easures and Television Sitcoms
39
The Gay Straight Man Jack Benny and The Jack Benny Program
63
The Sissy Boy the Fat Ladies and the Dykes Queerness andas Gender in Peewees World
81
You Flush It I Flaunt It
97
Notes
105
Index
137
Copyright

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Page 42 - I mean the term lesbian continuum to include a range — through each woman's life and throughout history — of woman-identified experience; not simply the fact that a woman has had or consciously desired genital experience with another woman.
Page 42 - If we expand it to embrace many more forms of primary intensity between and among women, including the sharing of a rich inner life, the bonding against male tyranny, the giving and receiving of practical and political support; if we can also hear in it such associations as marriage resistance and the "haggard...
Page 3 - I am using the term queer to mark a flexible space for the expression of all aspects of non- (anti-, contra-) straight cultural production and reception.8 As such, this cultural "queer space" recognizes the possibility that various and fluctuating queer positions might be occupied whenever anyone produces or responds to culture.
Page 133 - Like the other, more materially dangerous kind of coming out, it involves the risk — here, a certainty — of uttering bathetically as a brave declaration that truth which can scarcely in this instance ever have been less than self-evident. Also like the other kind of coming out, however, denomination of oneself as a fat woman is a way in the first place of making clear to the people around one that their cultural meanings will be, and will be heard as, assaultive and diminishing to the degree...
Page 15 - In a sense, then, everyone's pleasure in these genres is "perverse," is queer, as much of it takes place within the space of the contraheterosexual and the contrastraight. Just how much everyone's pleasures in mass culture are part of this contrastraight, rather than strictly antistraight, space— just how queer our responses to cultural texts are so much of the time— is what I'd finally like this essay to suggest.
Page 133 - ... divinity." The presiding figure for these meditations has been, naturally, Divine, the late star of many John Waters films. As a huge man who repeatedly created the role of "the most beautiful woman in the world," Divine seems to offer a powerful condensation of some emotional and identity linkages — historically dense ones — between fat women and gay men. Specifically, a certain interface between abjection and defiance, what Divine referred to as "glamor fits...
Page 121 - ... relationships should ever have become so rigidly identified with each other; and why such violent strictures should be found necessary to enforce women's total emotional, erotic loyalty and subservience to men. I doubt that enough feminist scholars and theorists have taken the pains to acknowledge the societal forces which wrench women's emotional and erotic energies away from themselves and other women and from woman-identified values.
Page 16 - alternative' readings, wishful or willful misreadings, or 'reading too much into things' readings. They result from the recognition and articulation of the complex range of queerness that has been in popular culture texts and their audiences all along.
Page 31 - So you can go home when the show's over and strut before your wives and sweethearts and play at being the stronger sex for a minute. I'm sure they see through you just like we do.
Page xvi - I ultimately use [queerness] to question the cultural demarcations between the queer and the straight (made by both queers and straights) by pointing out the queerness of and in straight couples, as well as that of individuals and groups who have been told they inhabit the boundaries between the binaries of gender and sexuality: transsexuals, bisexuals, transvestites, and other binary outlaws. Therefore, when I use the terms "queer" or "queerness" as adjectives or nouns, I do so to suggest a range...

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