For this task I really wanted to begin exploring a theme I am passionate about, something I can experiment with and carry on. That is why I have taken my time to research into an issue that means something to me, which is exploring the notion of ‘gay culture’. I am intrigued to understand what this term means, what fits into the category of ‘gay culture’ and is it just fulfilling expectations people have of the gay community, creating a segregation between homosexuality and the the rest of society.
Whilst exploring this idea I came across this article written for The Guardian by Paul Burton, titled “Gay Culture Doesn’t Begin and End With Grindr and The Scene”, which highlighted concerns I was having and raised new questions. It brings into questioning what passes for gay culture, using ‘Grindr’ (a gay cruising app) as an example of what may be considered to fit in this category. But it isn’t as simple as saying that belongs to this culture, people may make the association, but as Burton puts it “If Grindr really is an example of gay culture then is dogging an example of “straight culture”?”.
The article does refer to the ‘gay scene’, which I believe is referring to the gay districts in cities, such as Soho in London. What isn’t really questioned that is a concern for me is whether these ‘Scenes’ are helping the progression of the gay community being accepted and integrated into the wider community. My belief is that it hinders this integration, and that it creates a segregation.
To start experimenting for this phonar task I have explored the expectations of gay people, another key point that is raised in the article. Burton mentions that “Once, gay men were associated with the wit and wisdom of Oscar Wilde. Now it’s the huff and puff of – well, take your pick.”. How I interpret this is that we gain our assumptions of gay people through famous gay icons that are delivered to us through the media, such as in TV and Magazines.
I have created a giff image (below) which explores what expectations may define gay people in todays society.