From Publishers Weekly
In this "work of love from a fag-hag author," humor writer Crimmins (Where Is the Mango Princess?
etc.) considers gay men's multifarious contributions to society and celebrates the "golden age of 'Global Queering.' " (Lesbians, she finds, have been too domestic to influence much.) In 10 brief chapters, she reflects on the culture of camp, the popularity of "gay expressions" ("butch," "breeder"), gay restaurants (they have "exotic ingredients and flamboyant presentations"), fashion designers, sex practices, Judy Garland musicals and 1960s game shows (with gay pioneers like Paul Lynde and Charles Nelson Reilly) and more. As Crimmins has it, gay men are responsible for the popularity of barbecue (James Beard, who was gay, popularized outdoor grilling) and Abercrombie & Fitch (fraternity boys sporting that brand are aping a gay lifestyle—without knowing it—by buying into photographer Bruce Weber's vision of male beauty). Friends
and Sex and the City
had gay roots and gay writers, she says, and flaunted a code of gay allusion. Few would argue with the thesis that gay men have had a profound and positive cultural impact, but this volume may not be anyone's chosen proof. Crimmins's casual use of words like "fairy," "faggot," "homo" and "nelly" may prove a stumbling block to her readers, as might her persistent stereotyping.
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About the Author
Cathy Crimmins, bestselling coauthor of Newt Gingrich's Bedtime Stories for Orphans
and The Gay Man's Guide to Heterosexuality
, is one of the most savvy observers of pop culture writing today. Her previous book, Where Is the Mango Princess?
, received the Outstanding Book Award from the American Society of Journalists and Authors and is being made into a TNT movie featuring Julianna Margulies and Alfred Molina.