Gender Studies | Seminar in Gender Studies: All Gay All the Time: Sexuality and Citizenship in the Age of Visibility
G402 | 5885 | Walters, Suzanna

In the past 20 years, lesbians and gays have catapulted into the
cultural limelight, moving from a space of invisibility and coded
stereotypes to an almost obsessive "spectacularization."  How are we
to understand this new social and cultural visibility of lesbians
and gays?
What identities are made known - and which ones are further
obscured - in the new commodification of difference?  Why is the
viewing public down with "Queer Eye" but down on gay marriage?  And
why has gay marriage emerged as the hot political issue of the
future while sexual freedom has become a tired watchword of an
outmoded past?  The class focuses on feminist and queer conceptions
and reconceptions of citizenship, how sexual practices, identities,
and communities become defining characteristics of appropriate
national identity, and how popular media helps to frame debates and
define subjectivities.  We will interrogate the (vexed) relationship
between contested gender and sexual identities, claims of
citizenship and inclusion, contradictory media practices, and
visions of a liberatory and emancipated civil society.