Week 11 – Zach Nutman

In Thinking about Triggers, Thumbs, Sex, and Death by B. Ruby Rich, the author starts by discussing three films, all sexually explicit, that were released at similar times. In The View from the Shortbus, or All Those Fucking Movies by Nick Davis, he questions whether sex on screen can be rendered queer merely by the public nature in which it is viewed and how this is shifting with the increasingly less communal way in which films are viewed in the digital age. Both authors are interested in the ever shifting scale of sexual expression that ranges from romantic to explicit or even obscene and how this intersects with ideas of queerness. Rich discusses Blue is the Warmest Colour, a film with lengthy lesbian sexual content that led to its being banned in certain states in the Southern U.S. – in Judith Butler’s Charmed Circle, both lesbian sex and sex public reside in the outer limits, so by Davis standards the film is doubly taboo than an equivalent film depicting straight sex creating an interesting paradigm that renders queer sex on film as intrinsically “more explicit” than equivalent straight sex acts.

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