Wednesday, August 8th, 2012

Book Gay

"Among the most unusual things about How to Be Gay is that it is, at heart, a 500-plus-page work that explores a fundamental kind of gay sensibility by concentrating almost exclusively on one actress, Joan Crawford, and on a single scene in a single movie, the 1945 drama Mildred Pierce."
Man. Book publishing, what is the deal.

9 Comments / Post A Comment

LondonLee (#922)

I love 'Mildred Pierce' but I've never had anal sex. Life is so confusing.

skahammer (#587)

Many outsiders condemned the class as “an overt attempt to recruit straight students to the gay lifestyle,” Mr. Halperin writes. They feared it offered what he calls “the blueprint for homosexual world domination.” (Now there’s a blueprint that would make for a small, excellent work of comic speculative fiction.)

Martin Amis, "Straight Fiction," 1995 in Esquire. Right?

hershmire (#233,671)

"The book can be a drag (in the non-gay sense) but is never a bore."

Ooh, that's going to cause a lot of non-gay drag queens to write to the Times.

La Cieca (#1,110)


To be sure, it's a great scene, big Hollywood acting at its best, with that really iconic moment (2:12) when Crawford morphs from surprised hurt to absolute cold resolve: I really believe that is what the face of a murderer looks like. But, gay as I am (a lot) I don't find this scene particularly campy or queer-resonant. For that you want Crawford in the 1950s in junk like Queen Bee or Female on the Beach. Now those are movies that have a lot in common with anal sex, especially in the "what was I thinking?" department.

flossy (#1,402)

More like "How to Be Old."

macartney (#1,889)

This book was delightful when I read it a few months back and it was called "Queer Street" and was written by James McCourt.

Multiphasic (#411)

How a Person Should Be a Good Gay Woman, Alone.

By Brooklyn.

And sometimes Canada.

Kakapo (#2,312)

I do not understand what this sentence's purpose is:

If you have no feeling for “Mildred Pierce,” you might react to this information by screaming a few of the minimalist lyrics to the 1990 Sonic Youth song named after the film. (“Mildred Pierce!!!!! Noooooooooooooooooooooooh!!!!!!!!!!”)

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