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queer studies - books

Outcast Films is committed to education through the use of film and video. Here are just a few books that we are recommending to introduce our readers and viewers to queer film and theory. Enjoy!

Queer Studies 101 (listed by author’s name)

Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader
(Henry Abelove, Michele Aina Barale, David M. Halperin, eds.; Routledge, 1993)
Broad, diverse, challenging, and serious introduction to a wide range of scholarship in the emerging field of gay and lesbian studies.

How Do I Look? Queer Film and Video
(Bad Object-Choices, ed; Seattle: Bay Press, 1991)
Both a critique of contemporary film and video and an urgent examination of larger issues of representation, How Do I Look? is an invaluable contribution to gay and lesbian studies.

Screened Out: Playing Gay in Hollywood from Edison to Stonewall
(Richard Barrios, ed.; Routledge, 2002)
An important contribution to queer film studies, Screened Out offers an insightful look into the history of being queer on film.

What Are You Looking At?
(Paul Burston; Routledge, 1995)
This lively collection of essays and articles about queer sex, style, and cinema tests the boundaries and sensitivities of gay culture.

The Bent Lens: World Guide to Gay and Lesbian Film
(Lisa Daniel and Claire Jackson, eds.; Alyson Publications; 2nd edition 2003)
Spanning gay and lesbian filmmaking from 1914 to the present day, The Bent Lens showcases 2300 titles from 45 different countries, including feature films, documentaries, and short films.

Making Things Perfectly Queer : Interpreting Mass Culture
(Alexander Doty; University of Minnesota Press, 1993)
In Making Things Perfectly Queer, Alexander Doty argues that films, television, and other forms of mass culture consistently elicit a wide range of queer responses, and suggests a framework for interpreting mass culture that stands as a corrective for many standard cultural approaches.

Now You See It: Studies on Lesbian and Gay Film
(Richard Dyer. Routledge, 1990)
Richard Dyer's groundbreaking study of films by and about lesbians and gay men is also a case study of the dynamics of lesbian and gay cultural production.

No Future: Queer Theory and the Death Drive
(Lee Edelman; Duke University Press, 2004)
Using film, as well as literature and cultural theory, Edelman outlines a radically uncompromising new ethics of queer theory, in which he situates the figure of the child as representative of a future inherently unavailable to the queer identity.

Out Takes: Essays on Queer Theory and Film
(Ellis Hanson, ed.; Duke University Press, 1999)
This collection brings together the work of both film scholars and queer theorists to advance a more sophisticated notion of queer film criticism.

Queer Looks: Perspectives on Lesbian and Gay Film and Video
(Gever, Martha, John Greyson, and Pratibha Parmar, eds.; Routledge, 1993)
Queer Looks is a collection of writing by video artists, filmmakers, and critics which explores the recent explosion of lesbian and gay independent media culture.

The Celluloid Closet: Homosexuality in the Movies
(Vito Russo; Harper Paperbacks; 1987)
A witty and searing document of the turning points of the depiction of gays and lesbians on screen.

Deviant Eyes, Deviant Bodies
(Chris Straayer; Columbia University Press, 1996)
This pioneering work moves beyond the traditional focus on the heterosexual male "gaze" as the dominant form of spectatorship to argue that women and other "others" can engage with films in deliberately deviant ways that surpass and subvert patriarchal desire.

Working Like a Homosexual: Camp, Capital and Cinema
(Matthew Tinkcom; Duke University Press, 2002)
With a special emphasis on the tensions between high and low forms of culture and between good and bad taste, Matthew Tinkcom offers a new vision of queer politics and aesthetics that is critically engaged with Marxist theories of capitalist production.

Screening the Sexes: Homosexuality in the Movies
(Parker Tyler; Anchor Books, 1973)
Tyler, the author of numerous film criticisms, offers insights into many renowned gay films as well as several straight films that present multiple interpretations.

Keyframes: Popular Cinema and Cultural Studies
(Amy Villarejo and Matthew Tinkcom, eds.; Routledge, 2001)
Keyframes links the study of popular cinema around the world with the transformative effects of cultural studies on film studies.

The Fruit Machine: Twenty Years of Writings on Queer Cinema
(Thomas Waugh, ed.; Duke University Press, 2000)
The Fruit Machine is a collection of Waugh's reviews and articles published in gay community tabloids, academic journals, and anthologies. It provides an important historical perspective to the growth of film theory, criticism, and moviemaking itself.

Violets and Vampires
(Andrea Weiss, Penguin 1993)
The first comprehensive study of lesbians in the movies, from early silent films to recent lesbian independent projects. Weiss also explores the images conjured up by lesbian spectators during the long period when Hollywood forbade open portrayal of lesbians. (Out of print; for this book please visit www.jezebel.org)

Uninvited: Classical Hollywood Cinema and Lesbian Representability
(Patricia White; Indiana University Press, 1999)
Insightful look at classic films through the lens of lesbian representability; images of lesbian desire, love, and life in mainstream movies.

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