“The Gayborhood: From Sexual Liberation to Cosmopolitan Spectacle” edited by Christopher T. Connor and Daniel Okamura— The Loss of Collective Identity

Connor, Christopher T. and Daniel Okamura, editors.“The Gayborhood: From Sexual Liberation to Cosmopolitan Spectacle”, Lexington Books, 2021.

The Loss of Collective Identity

Amos Lassen

“The Gayborhood: From Sexual Liberation to Cosmopolitan Spectacle” examines the experiences of LGBT+ persons in an era of heightened visibility. Gay urban enclaves, (gayborhoods) illustrate the evolution of LGBT+ political capacity building. Since they began to emerge after World War II, gayborhoods have homogenized at the expense of women, transgender, and nonwhite persons due to neoliberal policies promoted by urban planners. Their popularization and economic vitality correspond to a loss of collective identity and space for some inhabitants. While gayborhoods were once diverse and inclusive spaces that rejected normative institutions of marriage and assimilation into dominant society, the stakeholders have now aligned themselves with conformity and profitability to legitimize their existence. The contributors in “The Gayborhood” reflect on the future of LGBT politics and look beyond the commercialized aspects of gayborhoods and look at the communities and aspirations within.

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