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Straight
Constructions of Heterosexuality in the Cinema
Straight
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Wheeler Winston Dixon - Author
SUNY series, Cultural Studies in Cinema/Video
N/A
Hardcover - 218 pages
Release Date: January 2003
ISBN10: 0-7914-5623-4
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5623-1

Out of Print
Price: $31.95 
Paperback - 218 pages
Release Date: January 2003
ISBN10: 0-7914-5624-2
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5624-8

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Summary Read First Chapter image missing

Explores the ways that stereotypes of heterosexuality are portrayed and constructed in film.

straight / 'strat (adj.) . . . without curves . . . correct . . . honest . . . not deviating from the normal . . . conventional . . . heterosexual

Practically all mainstream cinema is "straight," and has been since its inception. In Straight, Wheeler Winston Dixon explores how heterosexual performativity has been constructed in film, from early cinema to the present day. In addition to discussing how cinematic visions of masculine and feminine desire have been commodified and sold to reinforce existing societal constructs, Dixon also documents the recent emergence of "hypermasculinity," a kinetic and exaggerated masculinity that has been created to counter the more gentle, thoughtful male portrayed in While You Were Sleeping, Sleepless in Seattle, and other films that seemingly threaten the established order of patriarchal cinematic discourse.

Straight will spark numerous discussions about heterosexuality as a performative construct in the cinema. Dixon’s work forces readers to ponder how particular media texts are marked as ‘straight’ and the limits of such conceptualizations … His study is a fine addition to a burgeoning and significant conversation.” — Film Quarterly

"Dixon moves far beyond mere summary, synthesizing a number of disparate approaches to gender, sexual orientation, and heteronormativity, and at the same time particularizing the argument by grounding it in the details of his vast knowledge of Hollywood, international, and alternative cinemas. This detailed engagement makes Straight a breath of fresh air, even for those readers who may already be familiar with the terms of its overall argument. The book's style is vigorous and lively, and this makes it not just interesting, but positively enthralling and invigorating to read." — Steven Shaviro, author of The Cinematic Body

"
What is particularly attractive to me is that Wheeler Winston Dixon knows about people and moments that don't show up in the typical cinematic historical record. Straight is a very strongly written book." — Murray Pomerance, editor of Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls: Gender in Film at the End of the Twentieth Century

Wheeler Winston Dixon is the James Ryan Endowed Professor of Film Studies, coeditor in chief of Quarterly Review of Film and Video, and chairperson of the Film Studies Program at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. His many books include The Second Century of Cinema: The Past and Future of the Moving Image; The Films of Jean-Luc Godard; and The Transparency of Spectacle: Meditations on the Moving Image, all published by SUNY Press; and Collected Interviews: Voices from Twentieth-Century Cinema.


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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

Acknowledgments

Introduction

1. Constructing Straightness

2. Breaks in the System

3. Performativity and Rupture

4. The Commodification of Straightness

Works Cited and Consulted

About the Author

Index



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