Out of the Closets and into Cyberspace: Simulating the Gay Ghetto in the Internet Age
Gay liberation’s pioneers chanted, “Out of the closets and into the streets!” What happens when the space of gay liberation is no longer urban America’s real streets, but the Internet’s simulated spaces, its “home” pages and email “addresses”? This project will approach this broad topic by concentrating on a reading of a recent social phenomenon: the decline of the urban “gay ghetto,” the space so necessary to imagining a street-activist movement in the 1970s, amid the rise of a virtual gay community in Internet forums, blogs, and online dating services. The project will involve a survey of recent queer studies scholarship concerning the Internet, a review of available data on urban gay populations, and close analyses of three exemplary websites.
Bell, Matthew (2008). Out of the Closets and into Cyberspace: Simulating the Gay Ghetto in the Internet Age. CARS Summer Grants. Item 63.