Gay TV and Straight America
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Description: "A highly engaging and impeccably researched study of the cultural anxieties produced in the destabilization of straight and gay identity." --Michael DeAngelis, DePaul University "Original and compelling . . . an example of the best kind of television scholarship. Gay TV and Straight America is a rare find." --Sasha Torres, author of Black, White and In Color: Television and Black Civil Rights After years of relative silence on the subject of homosexuality, television in the 1990s saw a striking increase in gay material. Sitcoms like Friends, Seinfeld, Ellen, and Will & Grace, and dramas like Party of Five, Beverly Hills 90210, Homicide: Life on the Street, and The Commish added numerous gay and lesbian characters, aired special gay-themed episodes, and included references to homosexuality nearly every week. In Gay TV and Straight America, Ron Becker draws on a wide range of political and cultural indicators to explain this sudden upsurge of gay material on prime-time network television. He argues that the growing visibility of gay material both reflected and deepened Straight America's anxieties about social fragmentation and the politics of sexuality. In this cultural climate, gay material became a highly charged but also highly valuable narrowcasting-age tool for television executives looking to target a quality audience of well educated, upscale adults interested in "edgy" programming. Bringing together Supreme Court rulings, media coverage of gay rights battles, debates about multiculturalism and political correctness, analyses of numerous prime-time programs and much more, Becker helps us understand just what gay TV reveals about Straight America. In today's cultural climate wheresame-sex marriage bans are passed with wide margins yet millions of viewers tune in weekly to programs like Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, this book offers valuable insight on the complex condition of America's sexual politics. Ron Becker is an assistant professor of communications at Miami University, Ohio.
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List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2006
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
Publication date: 2/2/2006
Size: 5.75" wide x 8.75" long x 0.80" tall