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Promiscuous sexuality remains a central source of cultural fear and fascination, as seen in the resurgence of heated debates within American gay culture on its place in the era of AIDS. Cruising Culture provides the first extensive critical examination of competing understandings and experiences of promiscuity, both in post-war American gay culture and in American culture more broadly. In this original and provocative book, Ben Gove unpicks the root assumptions and contradictions which contribute to dominant punitive notions of promiscuous sex and desire. He challenges normative dichotomies between 'good' monogamous sexualities and 'bad' promiscuous sexualities by illustrating the inherent promiscuousness of all sexual desire, regardless of consciously expressed attitudes to sexual practice. The reader is guided through the maze of conflicting attitudes towards promiscuity in American gay culture with innovative readings of texts by influential, but hitherto critically neglected, authors such as Andrew Holleran, Larry Kramer, John Rechy, Edmund White and David Wojnarowicz. The book also draws on numerous critical and historical perspectives to represent an intricate picture of promiscuous sexual life in contemporary America. Cruising Culture will be essential reading for gay/elesbian/queer studies, gender studies and American studies, and for anyone else seeking a thorough discussion of the complex debates surrounding promiscuity.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780748613618
ISBN-10: 0748613617
Format: Paperback
(234mm x 156mm x 24mm)
Pages: 224
Imprint: Edinburgh University Press
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Publish Date: 15-Feb-2000
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Ben Gove

Ben Gove has taught at the University of Sussex and at Lehigh University.