THE PARTY’S OVER: RECOUNTING THE PAST IN AMERICAN AIDS PLAYS. - Sorbonne Université Access content directly
Special Issue Revista de Estudios Norteamericanos Year : 2023

THE PARTY’S OVER: RECOUNTING THE PAST IN AMERICAN AIDS PLAYS.

Abstract

: This article discusses the use of the past in regard to the gay sexual culture of the 1970s in three AIDS plays: Robert Chesley’s Jerker (1986), Victor Bumbalo’s Tell (1993) and Michael Kearns’s intimacies (1989). The themes explored—celebrating the sexual freedom of the past against contemporary criticism, commemorating places where gay men could meet for sexual encounters, and a sex continuum joining the busy nightlife of the past to the stern “here and now” of AIDS—stem from memory. Sex is only possible as a past activity and narrated as such in these plays, making them at the same time “obituary plays,” because they mourn sexual culture along with specific people, but also “memory plays,” because the memory that permeates them also omits some details, all the while magnifying others, in ways different from the plays of Tennessee Williams, who invented the term.

Dates and versions

hal-04421547 , version 1 (27-01-2024)

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Charalampos Keivanidis. THE PARTY’S OVER: RECOUNTING THE PAST IN AMERICAN AIDS PLAYS.. Revista de Estudios Norteamericanos, 27, pp.47-61, 2023, ⟨10.12795/REN.2023.i27.7⟩. ⟨hal-04421547⟩
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