Constructing LGBTQ Experience


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Analysis of:
- Neal, M. A. (2005). New black man. New York: Routledge.
- Chapter 3 -- Queers in a Barrel
- Gross, L. (2001). Up from invisibility: Lesbians, gay men, and the media in America. Columbia University Press.
- Chapter 1 -- The Mediated Society
- Chapter 3 -- Stonewall and Beyond
- Chapter 5 -- Television Takes Over
- Chapter 7 -- Journalism's Closet Open
- Chapter 8 --Breaking the Code of Silence
- Chapter 11 -- Beyond Prime Time
- Chapter 13 -- Old Stories and New Technologies

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  • He even risked being known as “That Gay Professor”He has pro-feminism and anti-homophobic perspective – He passed as gay just to see what he can get from his students perspective of him as a Black gay maleQueer – Made something seem strange and unusual in the context of very conservative notions of black identity (p.73).
  • Black gay male are perceived as selfishly and even purposely spreading HIV within the Black community and therefore are undermining the already taxed family structures of the Black community. Are our homophobic views driven our reading of the Bible, rather than the Bible shaping our views? (p.91) Gregory Love was attacked for mistakenly jumped into a stall that was occupied by another male student (p.79-80)Sakia Gunn was attacked because she said she was lesbian for fear of being raped (p.93)
  • Mainstreaming is a commonality of viewpoints and values that television tends to cultivate in its viewers. Television dominates the cultural environment, telling most of the stories to most of the people all of the time. Question appears on (p.7)Most of us have components of our knowledge that derive wholly or in part from fictional representations.. Such as Jail, Murder Trials (OJ Simpson), Riots…
  • - It also shapes the effects of such depictions on the images held by society at large and by members of this minority groups.
  • Since we born we are defined as girl = pink – boy = blue…Sexual minorities are particularly vulnerable to the internalization of mainstream values, given that the process of self-identification generally occurs in isolation and relatively late in life. (p.17) Individuals who internalize or fail to challenge mainstream beliefs often do not realize, however, that by defending antigay and antilesbian values, they are essentially doing the work of their oppressors. (p.17) (heterosexual hegemony) The most effective form of resistance to the hegemony of the mainstream is to speak for oneself, to create the narratives and images that counter the accepted, oppressive, or inaccurate ones. (p.19) Camp is an aesthetic sensibility that regards something as appealing or humorous because of its ridiculousness to the viewer. Singer, actress and comedian Bette Midler is known for her camp stage shows and film characters. (Wikipedia)
  • - Gay readers saw Epstein analysis as a homophobic masquerade – offensive and dangerous. However, the then Executive Editor of Harper’s Magazine, Midge Decter replied that the article was “serious, and honest, and misread.”NGTF – Positioning itself to be the primary gay organization in consulting and negotiating with national media. They went against the episode but the network refused to make the major changes that would have been required to satisfy the activists. NGTF and GAA organized a nationwide protest against the episode. The APA condemn the Welby program for promoting a false image. The episode didn’t stop but the term gay was substitute by pedophile.
  • FYI CBS NEWS – public apology from Mayor Diane Feinstein creates confusion(p.52). Cleve Jones’ speech (gay activist and former Harvey Milk aide) misused and misinterpretation. PJGTF took up the role formerly played by the Media Gay Project.
  • - Character, Archie Bunker (old man), discovered that a football-player pal was gay.
  • Standard of Good Taste – Letter to a rep of the Unitarian Universalist Gay Caucus by an ABC reporter. (p.83) Chris Cagney was first played by Meg Foster and then replaced by Sharon Gless. (p. 86) Something similar occurred with other TV show characters, as well as with the miniseries about Gloria Naylor’s novel, The Women of Brewster Place. (p.86)
  • C.J. Lamb (Amanda Donohoe) and Abby Perkins (Michele Green) (February 1991) – Green left the show during the summer and C.J. Lamb was given a lesbian lover in one episode, whom she left at the end for a man.Picket Fences was Peter Kelley’s new series. He wrote the L.A. Law lesbian kiss episode. - Roseanne almost got canceled in 1994 for including a lesbian kiss between Roseanne and a lesbian character.
  • The family of Robert Reed (Brady Bunch’s dad) was unable to keep the secret that he was gay and died of AIDS for too long after he died. (111). Non publication of gay and lesbian wedding ads. They did not include
  • Without telling Kolata, editors added a paragraph with negative and biased statements about lesbians and the children they raised. Use of gay in reference to cultural patterns and political issues.
  • Schmalzworte many articles for the TIMES about AIDS and politics. (p.126)
  • Signorile was disappointed of the corrupted turn that gossip journalism was taken at the time (1989). (p.133) Malcolm Forbes – The fact that one of the most influential man of America was gay should be recorded. (p.134)Debate after 1991 Air Force harassment of Charles Greeley, who was a captain who marched in the Hay Pride parade the day before he was to be discharged. Pete Williams, spokesman for the Department of Defense, was called a hypocrite closeted-gay man.
  • Phil Donahue Show was followed by shows such as Oprah and Phil,Ricki Lake (expert-oriented high-toned serious), Geraldo and Sally Jesse Raphael (tabloid versions). (p.186)By the 1990s it became clear that audiences were more hostile to bisexuals than to gays and lesbians – confused and promiscuous. Transgendered people arouse endless fascination and evoke mixed emotional responses. (p.186)
  • PBS mandated by Congress to “help us see America whole, in all its diversity” and “provide a voice for groups in the community that might otherwise be unheard.” (p.188)ITVS – created by Congress with the mandate to “develop, produce and package independent work that addresses the needs of underserved communities.” (p.189) POV- Launched by PBS to “provide visibility and support for compelling personal visions of nonfiction films and video producers.” (p.189)Tongues United was attacked and PBS greatly criticized. Many stations canceled it. (p.191)ITVS (p.193)
  • Early 1970s disco clubs were springing everywhere. David Bowie came out on Britain as a gay-bisexual. Then, 1977, came the hit of the movie and the Studio 54. Dobkin example was followed by many. And the Michigan Festival became a platform for launching other lesbian and bisexual musicians. (p.197) Vehicle for both sexually ambiguous singers making their way out of the closet, and platform for the homophobic and misogynistic posturings of angry-whit-male heavy metal and angry-black male gangsta rap. (p.198)Eminem (transcended race/mysogyny and homophobia) v. Nirvana (disclaimer against homophobia and racist) (p.199)
  • Sports and Military - are hostile environments to any signs of homosexuality. (p.201) Gay males tend to come out after they retired; lesbians t end to do it while still competing. (p.201)Kopay – retired NFL running back; first major league athlete to come out publicly (p.201) / Dave Pallone wrote a book and got fired. (p.205)Billie Jean King, professional tennis star and Wimbledon champion, outed in 1981 by her former lover. (p.202) / Muffin Spencer-Blevin discussed her lesbian marriage ceremony and was not followed and isolated. (p.206)Rocker was sentenced into “sensitivity training,” 20,000$ fine and 30 day suspension – fine was reduced to 500$ and suspension cut in half. (p.207)
  • For isolated gay, porn can be an important means of saying ‘other gays exist.’ (p.221) By arguing that it must be considered a vehicle of sexist ideology they confer on it the status of political thought and thus worthy of constitutional protection. (p.226) Free market can be a vehicle for free speech (p.227)Grecian Guild Pictorial was one of the gayest of the physique magazines that contributed to this new culture. (p.222) The existence of this images is a threat to those who guard that ramparts of the sexual reservation. (p.223)The feared power of images seems to reside in the representation of those behaviors and options which the ones in power wish to deny to those they control. (p.223)Ability to watch gay porn in the privacy of their homes. (p.225)By the 1970s the group Women Against Violence in Pornography and Media (California) and Women Against Pornography (New York) fight against it. However, their voice was not considered to be a representation of all feminists… This led to the “sex wars” – A line was drawn on lesbian sexuality. (p.225)
  • Gay and lesbian are among the most avid, loyal and plentiful commercial users of Internet. (p.228) CDA debate (p.229-231) censorship passive omission prevents teenagers and sometimes even adults to have access to information that could help them in their identity process formation (p.231) and the tracking system that produces violates the searchers privacy. (p.232) The debate is waiting to end in the Supreme Court.
  • Constructing LGBTQ Experience

    1. 1. Constructing GLBT (Q) Experience Aitza M. Haddad, J.D., LL.M.
    2. 2. OVERVIEW • Neal, M. A. (2005). New black man. New York: Routledge. – Chapter 3 – Queers in a Barrel • Gross, L. (2001). Up from invisibility: Lesbians, gay men, and the media in America. Columbia University Press. – Chapter 1 – The Mediated Society – Chapter 3 – Stonewall and Beyond – Chapter 5 – Television Takes Over – Chapter 7 – Journalism‟s Closet Open – Chapter 8 –Breaking the Code of Silence – Chapter 11 – Beyond Prime Time – Chapter 13 – Old Stories and New Technologies
    3. 3. Neal, M. A. (2005). New black man. New York: Routledge. QUEERS IN A BARREL
    4. 4. Where are the “Real men”? • Were the “women‟s movements” what turned males into gays? – Collective fear of African-Americans • Homosexuality will become pervasive in the community. – “Not Natural” (?) • It‟s outing airing “dirty laundry”? – Or there is a social need to know that recognized or important people are or were gay? • How is the Black male intellectual and professional endangering his status as Black and as male? – How being a Black male feminist queers a heterosexual Black male‟s identity?
    5. 5. • Acceptable black identities (?) – Heterosexism ↔ Homophobia • Hierarchy of sins – Homosexuality worst or the worst » Anti-Semitism v. Homophobia • Classroom v. Barbershop (and other institutions) – Black male nurse (?) • Two separate worlds? – Being perceived as gay as dangerous as actually being gay • Living the Life – DL – Subculture that provides spaces for Black gay males to fully express their sexuality • Demonization of Hip Hop – Homie-sexuals
    6. 6. • Middle ground between racial and sexual identity (?) – Demonization of Black gay male for the raise of HIV • Responsibility of outing those who are spreading it (?) – Why these man chose the DL in the first place? • Public debate about gay marriage – Forum for Black ministers to expose their concerns about homosexuality • Truth of the Bible – Are our homophobic views driven our reading of the Bible, rather than the Bible shaping our views? • Silence surrounding homosexual attacks – Love and Gunn – is violence justified?
    7. 7. Gross, L. (2001). Up from invisibility: Lesbians, gay men, and the media in America. Columbia University Press.
    8. 8. Chapter 1 – The Mediated Society • Today‟s Mass Media: – Central and remote from their audiences – Interconnected commercial enterprises in the business of buying and selling products. • Primary Product – audience (p.2) • What happens when 3 of the 5 top selling magazines in the country are owned by the same company, which also owns major record producing and book publishing companies, as well as CNN and HBO, and that ended the century merging with Internet service, AOL (Time Warner)? (p.3)
    9. 9. • The corporations that create media fare also control how particular social groups and issues are represented. – Representation in the media is in itself a kind of power: • Media invisibility helps maintain the powerlessness of groups at the bottom of the social heap. (p.4) • The images […] that do appear on the country‟s big and little screens will be those that make sense to those who have decision-making power. (p.5) • The Fall 1999 lineup forecast 17 gay characters, about the same as the number of African American, Asian, and Latino characters combined. – “There are gays on television because there are gays on television.” – “Unlike Latinos, Blacks, and Asian Americans, gay people are fully integrated into the Hollywood power structure.”
    10. 10. • Television has become the key source of information about the world - Mainstreaming – What options and opportunities are available to those groups whose concerns, values, and even the very existence are belittled, subverted, and denied by the mainstream? • Decisions about which events are newsworthy and about how to present them, are guided by considerations of dramatic for and content drawn from fiction. – The amount devoted to a news story is not necessarily a measure of importance on any objective scale, as opposed to its ability to attack and maintain audiences. – Most of us have components of our knowledge that derive wholly or in part from fictional representations.. • Such as Jail, Murder Trials (OJ Simpson), Riots… – Lacking other sources of information, most people will accept even the most inaccurate or derogatory information about a particular group or event.
    11. 11. Sexual Minorities and the Media • Differ in many ways from the “traditional” racial and ethnic minorities; – More like “fringe” political or religious groups. • Being defined as controversial invariably limits the ways lesbians and gay men […] are depicted in the media […] when they do appear; – What it means to be a woman? – What it means to be a man?
    12. 12. • Sexual minorities are particularly vulnerable to the internalization of mainstream values, given that the process of self-identification generally occurs in isolation and relatively late in life. (p.17) – The process of identity formation and self-identification for lesbian and gay people generally occurs in isolation and relatively late in life and often requires the strength and determination to swim against the cultural stream one is immersed in at birth. • Mass media biases and omissions are also balanced by the audiences own experiences. • Strategies of subversion – “Camp,” role playing and theatricality • Richard Dyer – “What we should be attacking is the attempt of heterosexual society to define us for ourselves […] and to pass this definition off as necessary and natural […] Our gender invisibility makes us especially vulnerable to the power of media images.”
    13. 13. Chapter 3: Stonewall and Beyond • Stonewall Riots – Stonewall Bar, Greenwich Village (June 28, 1969) • Importance of taking social conflict “outside.” – Media unaware of its historic significance. • New York Times – realized that this was a novel event; but buried the news in page 33 and told from the police‟s perspective. • The New York Daily – waited until July 6 to cover the story, which was treated with heavyhanded humor. • The Village Voice – capture the significance of the riots but with the use of depictive language, such as “the forces of faggotry.”
    14. 14. • The Gay Liberation Front (GLF) – September 12, 1969 – GLF meeting with the Voice publisher, who agreed to allowed the use of “gay” and “homosexual” in ads. • The Gay Activists Alliance (GAA) – September 1970 – GAA occupation of Harper‟s Magazine Offices. • Joseph Epstein‟s cover essay, “Homo/hetero: The Struggle for Sexual Identity.” • The National Gay Task Force (NGTF) – Marcus Welby, M.D. – “The Outrage” • Familiar but false linkage of gay men with child molestation • APA condemn the program – didn‟t stop – Gay changed by Pedophile
    15. 15. • If the activists were to succeed, they have to encourage positive images and not simply fight against negative stereotypes. • “Gay Power, Gay Politics” (April 26, 1980) – CBS Reports about San Francisco – Two categories of mostly white men: • The smoothly dangerous elite backstage power brokers • The menacing, leather-clad, sex-obsessed street gays who frightened children with unrestrained animal lust. – Real Danger – people unable to compare the program with first-hand knowledge of San Francisco • By concentrating in certain flamboyant examples of homosexual behavior, the program tended to reinforce stereotypes. • The Philadelphia Lesbian and Gay Task Force (PLGTF) – Met with CBS affiliates to discuss the program • Agreement of TV stations to run and produce Public Service Announcements (PSAs).
    16. 16. Chapter 5: Television Takes Over • “All in the Family” (February 1971) – Episode “Judging Books by The Cover” • That Certain Summer (1980 ABC made-for-TV movie) – Gay men touching and no gay character died at the end • 1980s “Special Interests” – Nicholas Von Hoffman (11/4/76) – “new-style Americans are having the Year of the Fag.” • The Presentable Gay – Is a new stereotype being born? – Overly favorable attention or portrayals that reinforce the prevailing images?
    17. 17. • Homosexuality […] becomes not a fact of life, but a moral issue on which everyone in earshot is expected to voice some vehement opinion. – The problem of being defined by their “problem.” – Standards of Good Taste – alternative gay (male) world never seen nor mentioned. • • • • Consenting Adult (1985) – TV Movie Welcome Home, Bobby (1986) – TV Movie Dynasty (1981-1989) – Prime time soap Opera Brothers (1984) – Cable sit-com • M*A*S*H (made-for-TV movie) v. Charlie's Angels (TV hit) (October 1981) – Success and ratings but canceled twice – Chris Cagney • Avalanche of letters and numerous Emmys saved the program.
    18. 18. • 1990‟s Media Attention – NBC „s L.A. Law (1991) – First lesbian kiss on network TV . – Picket Fences (1993) – Two high school girls experiment by kissing each other. – Roseanne (1988-1997) – “A woman cannot kiss a woman.” – Northern Exposure (1990-1995) – 1994 religious gay men wedding. – Melrose Place (1992-1990) – Good night gay men kiss. – Advocate (1994) – Why Can‟t This Man Get Laid? – Serving in Silence (1995) – NBC movie with brief lesbian kiss. – Friends – Carol and Susan‟s wedding in 1996.
    19. 19. Chapter 6: Journalism’s Closet Opens • Etiquette of “inning” – 1990‟s practices; decorous inhibition of ones‟ private life. – AIDS made it more difficult to maintain the practice of homosexuality denial. – Jeffrey Schmalz – “It is important that people know that someone like this dies of AIDS.” • One thing is burying and marrying is yet another. – 1990s commonplace for newspapers to include “companion” among survivors listed. – Chaos due to public notices of lesbian and gay weddings.
    20. 20. • New York Times motto: “All the News That‟s Fit to Print.” – For a long time, gay issues were unfit. – 1986 AIDS epidemic began to emerge. • 1987 – Times Executive Director Max Frankel authorized the used of “gay” as an adjective meaning homosexual. – 1989 – National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) urged Gina Kolata to write a story about the lesbian “baby boom” around the country. • The article was changed before publishing. – NGLTF, ACLU‟s Gay and Lesbian Rights Project, and Gay and Lesbian Alliance against Defamation (GLAAD) protested and the editors admitted their fault. – TIMES became a gay friendly location.
    21. 21. • Important coming outs of the 1990s: – Jeffrey Schmalz – came out simultaneously as a Gay with AIDS. – Leroy Aarons – came out as a gay men in an American Society of Newspaper Editors (ASNE) meeting. • His speech sowed the seeds of what soon became the National Lesbian and Gay Journalist Association. – Steve Gendel – first gay newsman to come out in national television; CNBC‟s Real Personal. – Garret Glaser – entertainment reporter at KNBV-TV Los Angeles who wanted to come out in air but was told by the station to do it in February or May because of ratings. It finally did it in December 1994. – David Brudnoy – popular right wing radio talk show personality . Came out in 1994 after collapsing in the air for AIDS-related pneumonia.
    22. 22. Chapter 8: Breaking the Code of Silence • Outing – Practice of publicly identifying secretly gay public officials. – Long favorable tactic used as a form of social control by the enemies of gays. – Inning – Line of discretion drawn by the media. • AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) – Outrageous media-attracting tactics for AIDS – Importance of gossip in the crafting of gay subcultural identity. • Obligation to the community? Right to know? • Matter of privacy? Right to be left alone?
    23. 23. • Michelangelo Signorile – Gossip Watch – List of names of gay and lesbian celebrities – Attack media for failing to pay enough attention to AIDS – The Secret Gay Life of Malcolm Forbes • The debate about outing intensified. • Charles Greeley v. Pete Williams – Thomas Stoddard – only example in which outing has advanced the interest of gay people. – Michael McWilliams – some cause-and-effect should be established between a gay person doing his or her job and doing damage to other gay people. • Donna Brazile – first Black woman directing a Presidential campaign. – Sexual orientation? Unknown
    24. 24. Chapter 11: Beyond Prime Time • Importance of talk-shows and daytime television. – The Phil Donahue Show • Arrival on TV coincided with the Gay and Lesbian Revolution • Offered women, other minorities, a place at the media table – The Jerry Springer Show • Moved from issues to relationships. • Overbooked guests and frequently added gay, lesbian and bisexuals. – Opportunity to reach people who might never otherwise encounter a gay or transgendered person speaking about their lives. – Jenny Jones “Secret Crush” • 1994 – Two men and a woman… You go Girl! • 1995 – Jonathan Schmitz killed Scott Amedure – Ratings took precedent over moralism.
    25. 25. • Public Broadcasting System (PBS) – What is public about public television? In 1988: – Independent Television Service (ITVS) – Point of View (P.O.V.) • Tongues Untied – US in the middle of cultural war – No direct funding of National Endowment of Arts (NEA) • Scenes used in 1992 –President Bush produced with tax money • P.B.S. and P.O.V. cancelations: – 1989 –Stop the Church by ACT UP – demonstration protesting catholic church‟s positions of AIDS. – 1997 – Out of Work – workplace discrimination through the experiences of three lesbian and gay workers. • 1994 PBS‟ American Playhouse series, Tales of the City – Attacked and canceled – PBS don‟t want to coproduce – Showtime replaced PBS – More Tales of the City • 1995 ITVS‟s The Question of Equality – well received
    26. 26. • Music and the 1970s : – Decade of emerging erotized male culture • Pseudo-gay Glam Rock – David Bowie • 1977 – Saturday Night Fever • From Studio 54 to “Disco Sucks!” – Alix Dobkin • Michigan Womyn‟s Music Festival • MTV and the 1980s: – – – – Michael Jackson – broke the color barrier Eminem v. Nirvana Sir Elton John & Sir Ian McKellen Madonna & Prince • The New Millennium; The 2000s: – From Melissa Etheridge to Sinéad O‟Connor – From RuPaul to Ricky Martin
    27. 27. • Sports in America – compared to military. – Very big business and central component of journalism. – Double standard on gays and lesbians coming out. • The David Kopay Story – Behind The Mask: My Double Life in Baseball • Billie Jean King‟s galimony suit – Muffin Spencer-Blevin – Double standard of being straight and being gay • U.S. women‟s soccer team – wives and mothers – Brandi Chastain – Nike sports bra • Reggie White‟s homophobic ranting supported by NFL • John Rocker from Atlanta Braves – Offended so many groups (immigrants, gay people, and minorities) that had to apologize (?)
    28. 28. Chapter 13: Old Stories and New Technologies • Importance of pornography to gay and lesbian sexual expression – vehicle of sexist ideology – free speech – Grecian Guild Pictorial • 1940s and 1950s “physique culture” of gay men. – Rare venue for the cohesion of gay identity and the sense of community. • The fight to keep sexuality invisible – Gay and lesbian sexuality undermines the unquestioned normalcy of the status quo (?) – Opens up the possibility of making choices that people might never have otherwise considered. • Obscenity dilemma – Deprave and corrupt minds (?) – Sexual revolution of the 1960‟s and the VCR • Symbolic violence of women in media – rape
    29. 29. New Media • New media – opportunity for the formation of new communities – Internet – Individual engagement • Unspoken secret – Gay and Lesbian Cyber-world • Lack of media ownership – Internet makes them equal • Dangers of deceptive and sometimes truthful selfrepresentations • Exxon‟s Communication Decency Act 0f 1996 (CDA) – Protection of children v. Free Speech (?) – Modified in 1998 – Child Online Protection Act(COPA) • Gay and lesbians harmful to children (?) • Credit card information – economic hardship • Internet School Filtering Act – censorship by passing omission (?)
    30. 30. QUESTIONS?