“Queer Media” in Teaching Media Quarterly 3(2): Winter 2014
Call for Proposals: Deadline Jan. 5, 2015
In recent years, a number of television shows have had central characters who are queer, such as Mitchell and Cameron on ABC’s Modern Family, Emily on ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars, Lauren and Amy on MTV’s Faking It, and Kurt, Blaine and Unique on Fox’s Glee. In addition, recent attention has been paid to straight showrunners’ creation of queer characters, like Jill Soloway of Amazon’s Transparent and Jenji Kohan of Netflix’s Orange is the New Black. Out gay and lesbian showrunners are also garnering popular attention, such as Ryan Murphy, Peter Paige, Marlene King, Caroline Dries, and Carter Covington. Although the recent attention paid to queerness has scholarly appeal, there are still few teaching resources available for talking about queer television. Recent attention paid to televised queerness is not new, but is instead a continuation of the trend started in the 1990s that marked the increase of gay and lesbian visibility with the emergence of a queer market. Representations of queerness are abundant and significant for how we understand questions of identity, made more complex by the intersecting notions of class, race, gender, and nation, among others. With more niche media spaces available than years past, including LGBTQ-themed film festivals, television channels such as LOGO and Here TV, and diverse modes of distribution and consumption, such as streaming sites and web series, queer characters, actors, showrunners and producers have claimed a notable space in the entertainment industry. At the same time, the US has seen landmark shifts in cultural attitudes and (particular) legal rights for queer people.
Teaching Media Quarterly seeks materials to be used in the classroom that critically investigate the intersection of queerness and television. Queerness is defined broadly here. It includes groups like transgender, bisexual, two-spirit, intersex, questioning and marginalized groups distinct from mainstream heteronormative culture. Particularly, we are interested in lessons that address the following:
- How do questions of race, class, gender, sexuality, place, and national identity emerge in media narratives that center queer identities?
- What is the relationship between queer lives as seen in media, and politics?
- How do representations of queer lives in media speak to struggles over competing political, economic, and media imperatives?
- How has convergence shifted distribution, industry practices, and/or reception of queerness in media?
- How have queer media from the past shaped and informed today’s queer media?
- How do the tensions between mainstream LGBT identities and queer identities manifest in media?
- How do identity discourses and claims to authenticity play a role in the celebrity buzz surrounding queer shows?
Teaching Media Quarterly Submission Guidelines & Review Policy
Teaching Media Quarterly seeks innovative assignments and lessons that can be used to critically engage with the topic of queer media for use in undergraduate classrooms. All submissions must include: 1) a title, 2) an overview and comprehensive rationale (using accessible language explain the purpose of the assignment(s) and define key terms) (250-500 words), 3) a general timeline, 4) a detailed lesson plan and assignment instructions, 5) teaching materials (handouts, rubrics, discussion prompts, viewing guides, etc.), 6) a full bibliography of readings, links, and/or media examples, and 7) a short biography (100-150 words).
Please email all submissions in ONE Microsoft Word document to
SUBMISSION DEADLINE: January 5, 2015
Submissions will be reviewed by each member of the editorial board. Editors will make acceptance decisions based on their vision for the issue and an assessment of contributions. It is the goal of Teaching Media Quarterly to notify submitters of the editors’ decisions within two weeks of submission receipt.
Teaching Media Quarterly is dedicated to circulating practical and timely approaches to media concepts and topics from a variety of disciplinary and methodological perspectives. Our goal is to promote collaborative exchange of undergraduate teaching resources between media educators at higher education institutions. As we hope for continuing discussions and exchange as well as contributions to Teaching Media Quarterly we encourage you to visit our website at http://www.teachingmedia.org/
Teaching Media Quarterly editorial board
E. D. Hristova
University of Minnesota