LGBTQ Film Festivals
LGBTQ Film Festivals
Curating Queerness
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Table of Contents
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Introduction. Festivals, Uncut: Queering Festival Studies, Curating LGBTQ Film Festivals.
-Pre-screening: constituting festival studies
-Queering festival studies: critical festival studies and the festival as a method
-Labour of love: desiring scholars/festivals
-The cut: a note on methodology
-Curating the book
-Speaking in queer tongues: a note on terminology
Chapter 1. Festivals that (did not) Matter: Festivals' Archival Practices and the Field Imaginary of Festival Studies.
-Cruising the archives
-Compromising evidences: ephemeral traces in the archives
-Unpacking the archives: (dis)ordering ephemeral traces
-Festivals that did not matter: festivals' archival practices and historiography
-Making history: on queer festival studies' historical project
-Festivals that matter: festival studies' field imaginary, methods, and political project
-'Doing justice' to ghosts: critical festival studies
Chapter 2. The Queer Film Ecosystem: Symbolic Economy, Festivals, and Queer Cinema's Legs
-Now you can see it= early gay and lesbian festivals, film cultures, and film distribution
-Soon at a theatre near you= Towards LGBTQ distribution
-Cultural fields: regimes of taste, queer relays, and the queer film ecosystem
-Distribution: queer film cultures, relays, and cultural fields
-Geographic relays: cultural fields in Europe and in America
Chapter 3. Out of the Celluloid Closet, into the Theatres! Towards a Genealogy of Queer Film Festivals and Gay and Lesbian Film Studies
-1970s: critics/scholars, curation as a praxis of canon-building, and gay and lesbian cinemas
-1980s: Cruising the protest, organizing gay and lesbian cinema
-1990s: Professionalizing queer cinema, disciplining scholars
-Festival as object / field of research: insider/outsider and critical festival studies
Chapter 4. Festivals as Archives: Collective Memory and LGBTQ Festivals' Temporality
-'I like to watch=': queer festivals' visual architectures
-Festivals' visual architectures, temporality, and cultural memory
-Festivals as archives: temporality and festivals' curatorial practices
-Festivals as archivists: documenting, representing and historicizing festivals.
-'Films bring us together': archives of feeling, affect, and queer cultural memory
Chapter 5. Images+Translation: Imagining Queerness and its Homoscapes
-Centre/periphery, festival tours, and festivals' geopolitical imaginary
-Festivals, gay languages, and the globalization of sexuality
-Film as gay language
-Catalogues, gay languages, and world-making: LGBTQ festivals and the globalization of sexuality
-Festivals as homoscapes: LGBTQ festivals, reverberations, and the disjunctive nature of globalization
Conclusion. The Impossibility of Festival Studies? On the Temporalities of Field Intervention and the Queering of Festival Studies
-The paradoxes of identity: doing justice to LGBTQ festivals

Reviews and Features

"LGBTQ Film Festivals lays bare the extent to which film festival studies’ theories and methods frequently reduce queer film festivals to being “merely” about identity instead of perceiving these festivals as central to our understanding of how knowledge is produced."
- Jonathan Petrychyn (University of Waterloo), Media Industries 8, 1 (2021)

"Mit seiner brillanten Arbeit, deren hoher theoretischer Anspruch absolut eingelöst wird, katapultiert sich Damiens in die Riege der internationalen Queerfilmfestivalforschung, von der so wichtige Impulse für die Festivalforschung insgesamt ausgehen. Seine Argumentation ist schlüssig und nachvollziehbar, das Buch sehr gut lesbar. Mit seiner hervorragenden Arbeit demonstriert Damiens, dass wir von diesem exzellenten Forscher noch einiges zu erwarten haben."
- Dagmar Brunow, Växjö, MEDIENwissenschaft, issue 01/2021

"With his exhaustive research and intricate attention to detail, Damiens has chronicled a vital history of LGBTQ film fests, adeptly capturing a doubly marginalized culture, ghosts and all. In this moment of pause, reflection and reinvention for film festivals, it’s a book we needed."
- Matthew Hays, Cineaste, Vol. XLVI, No. 1 (2020)

"An engaging and original history of queer film festivals and an insider critique of festival studies at large. Damiens has excavated our archives and offered a colourful tapestry of LGBTQ+ struggles over half a century, probing both the friendship and the activism at their core."
- Thomas Waugh, Concordia University, Canada

Antoine Damiens

LGBTQ Film Festivals

Curating Queerness

While scholars have theorized major film festivals, they have ignored smaller, ephemeral, events. In taking seriously minor European and North-American LGBTQ festivals which often only exist as traces within archival collections, this book revisits festival studies' methodological and theoretical apparatuses. As the first 'critique' of festival studies from within, LGBTQ Film Festivals argues that both festivals and queer film cultures are by definition ephemeral. The book is organized around two concepts: First, 'critical festival studies' examines the political project and disciplinary assumptions that structure festival research. Second, 'the festival as a method' pays attention to festivals' role as producers of knowledge: it argues that festivals are not mere objects of research but also actors already shaping academic, industrial, and popular cinematic knowledge. Drawing on the author's experience on the festival circuit, this book pays homage to the labour of queer organizers, critics, and scholars and opens up new avenues for festival research.

Antoine Damiens

Antoine Damiens is a FRQSC Postdoctoral Fellow within the Department of English and the Institute for Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies at McGill University (Montreal).