Queer connections: community, the scene and an epidemic

Ridge, Damien T. and Minichiello, Victor and Plummer, David (1997) Queer connections: community, the scene and an epidemic. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 26 (23). pp. 146-181. ISSN 0891-2416

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/089124197026002002


This article examines assumptions behind “gay community,” contrasting them with the experiences of homosexually active men on the commercial gay scene. In-depth interviews with mainly young men in Melbourne, Australia revealed that while the informants considered “the scene” to be a central part of the gay community, they were critical of the scene with respect to attributes of “community.” Anticipated components of community including unity, support, friendliness, and acceptance were not features of the informants' accounts. Conversely, the data revealed fragmented social networks involving various social groups, categories of people, and an “in/out” culture. The article also identifies a range of social dynamics associated with the scene, including commercial pressures, sexualization, and gender negotiations. Network characteristics and dynamics tend to work against the establishment of close and supportive friendships. Social influences on the adoption of "safe sex" are also discussed.

Item Type:Article
Research Community:University of Westminster > Life Sciences, School of
ID Code:8629
Deposited On:23 Sep 2010 16:27
Last Modified:23 Sep 2010 16:27

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