9780231119535

Up from Invisibility: Lesbians, Gay Men, and the Media in America

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780231119535

  • ISBN10:

    0231119534

  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2001-12-01
  • Publisher: COLUMBIA UNIV PRESS

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Summary

A half century ago gay men and lesbians were all but invisible in the media and, in turn, popular culture. With the lesbian and gay liberation movement came a profoundly new sense of homosexual community and empowerment and the emergence of gay people onto the media's stage. And yet even as the mass media have been shifting the terms of our public conversation toward a greater acknowledgment of diversity, does the emerging "visibility" of gay men and women do justice to the complexity and variety of their experience? Or is gay identity manipulated and contrived by media that are unwilling -- and perhaps unable -- to fully comprehend and honor it? While positive representations of gays and lesbians are a cautious step in the right direction, media expert Larry Gross argues that the entertainment and news media betray a lingering inability to break free from proscribed limitations in order to embrace the complex reality of gay identity. While noting major advances, like the opening of the Oscar Wilde Memorial Bookstore -- the first gay bookstore in the country -- or the rise of The Advocate from small newsletter to influential national paper, Gross takes the measure of somewhat more ambiguous milestones, like the first lesbian kiss on television or the first gay character in a newspaper comic strip.

Table of Contents

Preface xiii
The Mediated Society
1(20)
Mass Media and American Society
1(5)
Television as the Mainstream
6(6)
Sexual Minorities and the Media
12(5)
Subversion and Resistance
17(4)
Coming Out and Coming Together
21(19)
The Homosexual in Midcentury America
21(3)
Giving Voice to the Voiceless
24(5)
Provoking Concern
29(3)
The Voice Gets Louder
32(5)
Coming Out in the Nation's Living Rooms
37(3)
Stonewall and Beyond
40(16)
``Homo Nest Raided, Queen Bees Stinging Mad''
40(3)
``Turning Their Condition into Politics''
43(3)
Expressing Outrage
46(4)
Talking Back to the Media
50(6)
At the Movies
56(25)
``A Queer Feeling Every Time I Look at You''
56(4)
``Show Me a Happy Homosexual and I'll Show You a Gay Corpse''
60(4)
Friedkin Delivers Gay Corpses
64(3)
Getting the Word Out
67(4)
Gay Films for Straight Audiences
71(4)
Universal or Particular?
75(6)
Television Takes Over
81(13)
New Medium, Old Message
81(4)
No Sex, Please, We're Queer
85(9)
Aids and the Media
94(16)
Rumors of a ``Gay Cancer''
94(2)
Circling the Wagons
96(3)
Natural Squeamishness
99(5)
Media Activism in a Crisis
104(6)
Journalism's Closet Opens
110(21)
Burying and Marrying
110(3)
All the News Not Fit to Print
113(5)
The Gray Lady Goes Gay
118(7)
Coming Out in the Newsroom
125(6)
Breaking the Code of Silence
131(12)
Naming Names
131(4)
Outing the Pentagon
135(4)
Kinda Ask, Sorta Tell
139(4)
Hollywood Under Pressure
143(13)
AIDS Victims and Villains
143(4)
A Kinder, Gentler Hollywood
147(3)
Queering the ``Straight'' Text
150(6)
Hollywood's Gay Nineties
156(28)
``I feel pretty and witty and . . . Hey!''
156(8)
Still Villainous After All These Years
164(5)
Sad Young Men
169(8)
Some of My Best Friends Are Celibate
177(7)
Beyond Prime Time
184(24)
Adam and Steve and Phil and Oprah
184(4)
The Tongue-Tied Public Square
188(7)
Getting Over the Rainbow
195(6)
Locker-room Closets
201(7)
Morning Papers, Afternoon Soaps
208(13)
Coming Out in the Comics
208(8)
You're the First Person I Have Ever Told
216(5)
Old Stories and New Technologies
221(12)
The Good Parts
221(6)
Somewhere There's a Place for Us
227(6)
A Niche of Our Own
233(19)
Movement to Market
233(11)
Are We Being Served?
244(8)
Facing the Future
252(13)
Visibility and Its Discontents
252(6)
Looking Backward
258(7)
Sources 265(8)
Bibliography 273(16)
Index 289

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