Gay Male Literature

Three historically-specific definitions of the term “gay male literature” can be given. They are: (1) the portrayal of male-male desire in all of literature; (2) literature relating to the discursive category of homosexuality from 1869 onwards; and (3) literature relating… Continue Reading

West Side Story

Compared with the study of femininity, academic interest in masculinity is relatively recent. To explain this perhaps-belated arrival of men’s studies in critical discourse, this chapter starts with an overview of the historical circumstances in which the discipline came into… Continue Reading

American Studies conference

On Friday, June 10, 2016, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam will host the 22nd Amerikanistendag, the annual student conference of the Netherlands American Studies Association. The conference provides a forum for talented bachelor’s, master’s, research master’s, and Ph.D. students as well as… Continue Reading

Angels in America

The academic reception of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes (1995) has pointed out that the play addresses a number of traumatic episodes in American history, including racial segregation, the Red and the Lavender Scare,… Continue Reading

Holy Camp, Batman!

At his conception in 1939, Batman was positioned as the grim answer to an upbeat Superman: instead of an invincible superhero in bright colors, here was a mere mortal struggling with ethical dilemmas in a darkly drawn diegetic world. Later… Continue Reading

The Purloined Letter

The Purloined Letter book club reads and discusses drama, poetry, prose, and theory at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. All are welcome!   26 September 2018: Anthony Burgess, A Clockwork Orange 4 July 2018: Alice Munro, “Royal Beatings” 23 May 2018: Steven… Continue Reading