GAZE: Esther Newton Made Me Gay

GAZE: Esther Newton Made Me Gay
CLUB102 min

Director: Jean Carlomusto Producer: Starring: Released:Mon 05 Sep 2022


“There was nothing published about the culture and sociology of the gay community. I knew I was risking my career…”In an era when gay and lesbian culture was trivialised and pathologised, or at best ignored, Esther Newton broke new ground applying anthropological techniques to the study of drag queens and gay bars, insisting on the validity of gay culture as a unique existence that mattered.As a young butch lesbian in pre-Stonewall and pre-Women’s Liberation America, Newton tread a pioneering path that impacted on generations to follow.Beautifully entwining lesbian intellectualism with drag herstory, Carlomusto’s film posits a closeness in our collective queer past that will feel nostalgic for some and inspirational for others. As Esther says of her affinity with drag queens, “I felt like I had been a female impersonator my whole life.” The archive material from a pre-Gay Liberation drag underground is incredible to behold, not to mention the eye-opening insights into the lesbian-powered world of dog agility contests, of course. For lovers of… The Celluloid Closet, Ahead of the Curve, Dykes Camera Action!Pre-Feature Short: The Beyoncé Experience Dir. Blaise Singh / United Kingdom / 2021 / 10m In the lead-up to UK Black Pride, former cop Aaron Carty lives out his fantasy as a Beyoncé drag tribute.

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