Hard to Imagine: Gay Male Eroticism in Photography and Film from Their Beginnings to Stonewall

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9780231099981: Hard to Imagine: Gay Male Eroticism in Photography and Film from Their Beginnings to Stonewall

Spanning more than a century of photography and film, Hard to Imagine is the first visual chronicle of the evolution of gay male image culture, from the canonical works of "art" photography and cinema to the private and often highly explicit productions of amateurs. This comprehensive work explores a vast, eclectic tradition in its totality, analyzing the aesthetics of the visual imagery, its production, circulation, and consumption, and broad social and legal implications.

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The history of gay male erotic images is largely undocumented. Even when the material has been available, "good taste" and "common decency"--those concepts used to stop all talk about sex--have prevented their display. Thomas Waugh's full-length, profusely illustrated study is a breakthrough book that has information and analysis enough for three books. Thoughtful, smart, and well-written, Hard to Imagine uncovers a visual history of gay male eroticism that few know. It chronicles the complicated history of homosexual desire and how it has been depicted and repressed.

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Spanning more than a century of photography and film, Hard to Imagine is the first visual chronicle of the evolution of gay male image culture, from the canonical works of "art" photography and cinema to the private and often highly explicit productions of amateurs.

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Waugh, Thomas
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