A trend in cultural studies that reclaims a derogatory term referencing homosexuality in order to challenge essentialist ideas of fixed gender identities, sexual preferences, and all forms of ‘normality’, both homo—and hetero-, as well as to promote and celebrate a subversive ‘queering’ of all cultural texts. The philosopher Judith Butler's Bodies That Matter is widely regarded as a founding text of queer theory. In film studies, the development of queer theory and queer cultural politics has gone hand-in-hand with the rise of poststructuralism and postmodernism within the discipline, and with the establishment of New Queer Cinema.
A diverse body of ‘queer’ films (see queer theory), beginning around 1990 and ongoing, that are regarded as constituting a break with earlier representations of gays in cinema. Coined in 1992, the term signals a turning away from notions of negative stereotypes and positive images of gays and gayness in films, and a move towards cinematic explorations of the perverse and the deviant within the sexual domain; and/or celebrations of intertextuality, pastiche, irony, and irreverence.
Kuhn, A. and Westwell, G. (2012). "Queer theory." In A Dictionary of Film Studies. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 28 Mar. 2016
Kuhn, A. and Westwell, G. (2012). "New Queer Cinema." In A Dictionary of Film Studies. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 28 Mar. 2016
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