Heroic gay characters in popular film: Tragic determination, and the everyday

This source preferred by Christopher Pullen

Authors: Pullen, C.

http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/titles/10304312.asp

Journal: Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies

Volume: 25

Pages: 397-413

ISSN: 1030-4312

DOI: 10.1080/10304312.2011.565870

This essay discusses gay identity and notions of character construction, relating the concept of tragic determination in media representations. Issues of adaptation and the significance of the Dionysian and Apollonian drives within tragedy (relating to Nietzsche’s foundational work) are explored. A key concept is the examination of tensions between civic usefulness and emotive potential. Through an examination of Alan Turing’s disavowal as a gay icon (as a war time hero) in the Hollywood film Enigma (Michael Apted, 2001) in the substitution of a heterosexual romance, and conversely his sympathetic representation within the stage and television drama Breaking the Code (Hugh Whitemore, 1986), this essay reveals the problem of the gay hero in popular film, and its sensibility in diverse adaptations. Also exploring the contemporary ‘heroic’ representation of gay political icons, Harvey Milk and Pedro Zamora, this essay reveals a problem-oriented cinematic world where the spectre of the sacrificial/tragic gay self offers replacement for the historic subordinated and othered gay character. In this way, new stimulations of mainstream media commodity, offer the potential of subaltern transgression, yet at the same time reinforce the periphery of diverse sexual identity.

This data was imported from Scopus:

Authors: Pullen, C.

Journal: Continuum

Volume: 25

Issue: 3

Pages: 397-413

eISSN: 1469-3666

ISSN: 1030-4312

DOI: 10.1080/10304312.2011.565870

This essay discusses gay identity and notions of character construction relating to the concept of tragic determination in media representations. Issues of adaptation and the significance of the Dionysian and Apollonian drives within tragedy (relating to Nietzsche's foundational work) are explored. A key concept is the examination of tensions between civic usefulness and emotive potential. Through an examination of Alan Turing's disavowal as a gay icon (as a war time hero) in the Hollywood film Enigma (dir. Michael Apted 2001) in the substitution of a heterosexual romance, and conversely his sympathetic representation within the stage and television drama Breaking the Code (dir. Hugh Whitemore 1986), this essay reveals the problem of the gay hero in popular film, and its sensibility in diverse adaptations. In exploring the contemporary 'heroic' representation of gay political icons, Harvey Milk and Pedro Zamora, this essay also reveals a problem-oriented cinematic world where the spectre of the sacrificial/tragic gay self offers replacement for the historic subordinated and othered gay character. In this way, new stimulations of mainstream media commodity offer the potential of subaltern transgression, yet at the same time reinforce the periphery of diverse sexual identity. © 2011 Taylor & Francis.

This data was imported from Web of Science (Lite):

Authors: Pullen, C.

Journal: CONTINUUM-JOURNAL OF MEDIA & CULTURAL STUDIES

Volume: 25

Issue: 3

Pages: 397-413

ISSN: 1030-4312

DOI: 10.1080/10304312.2011.565870

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