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you’re listening to… Blur, ‘ Girls and Boys ’ , Parklife (1994) Media & Identity lecture 6 The Last Supper Cláudia Gabriela Marques Vieira so, what are we moving on to now…? Queer Theory Popularisation of Pansexuality Transexuality & Transgenderism

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you’re listening to…

Blur, ‘Girls and Boys’, Parklife (1994)


Media & Identitylecture 6The Last Supper

Cláudia Gabriela Marques Vieira


returning to…JUDITH BUTLER“Butler rigorously interrogates the necessity of fixed, immutable gender identities. Examining drag, butch/femme relations, cross-dressing, and transsexuality as practices of parodic repetition and imitation that challenge the hegemonic heterosexual regime, opening it to possible subversion, resistance, and resignification…”The Body You Want: Liz Kotz interviews Judith Butler, Artforum 31, no. 3, November 1992: 82


End of 1980s::idea of 'queer' politics took hold of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) activists and academics in US and internationally


ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) formed in 1987 at the Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center, New YorkIt "is a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals ... committed to direct action to end the AIDS crisis." - ACT UP NY


Queer NationFounded in 1990 in New York by members of ACT UP, against anti-gay violence.Described by activist scholars Allan Bérubé and Jeffrey Escoffier as the first "retro-future/postmodern" activist group to address gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender “To a significant degree, the relative frequency and acceptability of glbtq [gay lesbian bisexual transgender queer] representation in mass culture in the 1990s and early twenty-first century can be dated to the emergence of Queer Nation.”glbtq (Encyclopedia of Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender & Queer Culture)


Robert Grossman, The Nation, 24 January 2005Based on research by Katz into President Lincoln’s homosexualityKatz J. (2001) Love Stories: Sex between Men before Homosexuality University of Chicago Press: 3-25


“One of the things that ACT-UP and Queer Nation have tried to do…is make the question of identity less central. Both…movements have engaged theatrical venues for politicization…you get die-ins in the street, or kiss-ins in malls. It's a certain theatricalization…a certain performative production of identity, that is utterly strategic.”Butler, quoted in Kotz L. The Body You Want: Liz Kotz interviews Judith Butler, Artforum 31, no. 3, November 1992: 83


Vanity Fair, Aug 1993“When singer K.D. Lang appeared with model Cindy Crawford on the cover of Vanity Fair, she changed the images of lesbians forever. Following cover stories about lesbians in the mainstream publications New York and Newsweek, this photograph is significant not only for the way it addresses gender roles, but for its sheer joy and playfulness.”Stonewall 25: Pre- and Post-Stonewall Lesbian Imagery exhibition, Columbia University


whilst these are positive representations of sexuality outside the heterosexual norm, is Cindy Crawford’s status as supermodel being used here to commodify/package lesbian identity?


Street's like a jungle

So call the police

Following the herd

Down to Greece

On holiday -

Love in the 90's

Is paranoid

On sunny beaches

Take your chances looking for


Girls who are boys

Who like boys to be girls

Who do boys like they're girls

Who do girls like they're boys

Always should be someone you really love

Avoiding all work

Because there's none available

Like battery thinkers

Count your thoughts on 1 2 3 4 5 fingers

Nothing is wasted

Only reproduced

Get nasty blisters

Du bist sehr schon

But we haven't been introduced


Girls who are boys

Who like boys to be girls

Who do boys like they're girls

Who do girls like they're boys

Always should be someone you really love

Blur ‘Girls and Boys’Parklife (1994)


if people cultivate ‘acceptable’ self-images,if they seek to ‘pass’,youth culture’s acceptability of alternative sexualitiesmade sexual exploration ok


Glam Rock

Peaked 1971-1973

Slade, Sweet, David Bowie, Gary Glitter, Elton John & T. Rex

Influence Queen & KISS.

Glam performers often dressed androgynously in make up and glittery, florid costumes not dissimilar to costumes that Liberace or Elvis Presley wore when performing in cabaret.

“We were brickies in lipstick” - Slade

Marc Bolan, Trex, Glam Rock originator ViewTop of Pops 25th Anniversary Special


Glam Rock

An example would be David Bowie during his Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Sane phases. Sexual ambiguity was briefly in vogue: some bands took to playing in drag outfits for a while and Bowie told the press he was bisexual.


"Ziggy…seemed like a very positive artistic statement. I thought that was a beautiful piece of art, I really did. I thought that was a grand kitsch painting. The whole guy. Then that fucker would not leave me alone for years…And it took me an awful time to level out. My whole personality was affected….I thought I might as well take Ziggy to interviews as well. Why leave him on stage? Looking back it was completely absurd. It became very dangerous. I really did have doubts about my sanity. I can't deny that the experience affected me in a very exaggerated and marked manner. I think I put myself very dangerously near the line. Not in physical sense but definitively in mental sense.” (‘The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars’ entry, wikipedia, 2007).

Ziggy Stardust (1973)


‘NOVEAU NEW WAVE’“Franz Ferdinand's big queer hit takes straight guys where even Bowie feared to tread” Sheffield, ‘All the Young Dance Whores’, the village voice, July 2004

FRANZ FERDINAND ‘Michael’ (2004)


“’Michael’ cuts to the heart of new wave, which has always had a lot to do with straight kids trying to act as cool as queer kids. In the immortal words of Imperial Teen, "the prince wants to be a queen." The world is crawling with nouveau new wave bands now, indeed, the first thing everybody noticed about Franz Ferdinand was that they were a Brit new wave band imitating the New York new wave bands who are currently imitating old Brit new wave bands. There are all sorts of theories about why '80s-inspired new wave-ness and modness have come back with such a vengeance, but it's the first guitar-rock trend in years that has had anything to do with sex. New wave's eternal appeal has to do with its playful, humane pansexuality. It's a safe space for kids to act out, to try on gay or straight or bi poses at will, without brutalizing each other. People who condemned Bowie as a sexual tourist were missing the point; he was a sexual explorer (or "lodger," as he put it in the title of one of his best albums) because he was a sexual exile, like most of us, stuck in orbit like Major Tom and determined to make a home out of it. He built the floor that new wavers have been dancing on ever since, from Roxy Music to Culture Club to Pulp to the new waver indie kids currently shaking their hair at a club near you.”Sheffield, ‘All the Young Dance Whores’, the village voice, July 2004


Transsexual/transgender identityseems to counteract the commodification of pansexuality in significant ways


…and the transgendered/transexual individual’s domain remains sub-cultural, rather than popular, media forms


“Although the term transsexual is of recent origin, the phenomenon is not. The earliest mention of something which we can recognize ex post facto as transsexualism, in light of current diagnostic criteria, was of the Assyrian king Sardanapalus, who was reported to have dressed in women's clothing and spun with his wives. Later instances of something very like transsexualism were reported by Philo of Judaea, during the Roman Empire. In the 18th century the Chevalier d'Eon, who lived for 39 years in the female role, was a rival of Madame Pompadour for the attention of Louis XV. The first colonial governor of New York, Lord Cornbury, came from England fully attired as a woman and remained so during his time in office.” (Stone, 1988)

Allucquère Rosanne Stone (Sandy) Stone (formerly Olivia Stone) (1988) THE “EMPIRE” STRIKES BACK: POSTTRANSSEXUAL MANIFESTO, Other Voices, Other Worlds: Questioning Gender and Ethnicity, conference, Santa Cruz, CA


Allucquère Rosanne Stone (Sandy) Stone (formerly Olivia Stone)(1988) THE “EMPIRE” STRIKES BACK: POSTTRANSSEXUAL MANIFESTO Other Voices, Other Worlds: Questioning Gender and Ethnicity, conference, Santa Cruz, CA“’Posttranssexual’ was an ironic term, since whenthis essay was first published everything in theory was post-something-or-other. I was looking for a way forward. ‘Transgender’ is way better (ibid.)


Stone’s essay is based on research with patients of The Stanford Gender Dysphoria Program, began in 1968, and focusing on gender dysphoriasyndrome or transsexualism


Brief capsule of results from the The Stanford Gender Dysphoria ProgramA transsexual is a person who identifies his or her gender identity with that of the "opposite” gender. Sex and gender are quite separate issues, but transsexuals commonly blur the distinction by confusing the performative character of gender with the physical "fact" of sex, referring to their perceptions of their situation as being in the "wrong body” (cited in Stone, ibid.).


PRIMARY CRITIQUE OF STONE“Masculine behavior is notably obtrusive. It is significant that transsexually constructed lesbian-feminists have inserted themselves into the positions of importance and/or performance in the feminist community. As one woman wrote: ‘I feel raped when Olivia passes off Sandy... as a real woman. After all his male privilege, is he going to cash in on lesbian feminist culture too?’”Raymond J. (1979) The Transsexual Empire: The Making Of The She-Male. Teacher’s College Press


PRIMARY CRITIQUE OF STONE“ a masculinist violation of bodily integrity. All transsexuals rape women's bodies by reducing the female form to an artifact, appropriating this body for themselves...Rape, although it is usually done by force, can also be accomplished by deception’” (Raymond, ibid.)Raymond J. (1979) The Transsexual Empire: The Making Of The She-Male. Teacher’s College Press


“The essence of transsexualism is the act of passing. A transsexual who passes is obeying the Derridean imperative: "Genres are not to be mixed. I will not mix genres." I could not ask a transsexual for anything more inconceivable than to forgo passing, to be consciously "read", to read oneself aloud--and by this troubling and productive reading, to begin to write oneself into the discourses by which one has been written-in effect, then, to become a [look out- dare I say it again?] posttranssexual” (Stone, ibid.)


Your turn to present some of your images of representations that complicate the heterosexual/homosexual binary…..[for some of these images and summaries look at the option’s general forum]