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    "One of us": the queer afterlife of Margaret Thatcher as a gay icon

    Janes, Dominic (2012) "One of us": the queer afterlife of Margaret Thatcher as a gay icon. International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics 8 (2-3), pp. 211-228. ISSN 1740 – 8296.

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    In recent years Margaret Thatcher has come to be represented as a gay icon by a number of prominent right-wing gay men in Britain. This appears to clash with her record in office, on the basis of which she has previously been seen as a staunch enemy of gay liberation. The origins of a queer presentation of the former Prime Minister lie in the attacks made upon her during her time in office which portrayed her as androgynous and perverse. Such attacks were based on the complicated and ambivalent position she occupied by virtue of being a radical pioneer in her career and a believer in traditional moral standards. Aspects of her ambiguous image were subsequently available for appropriation by interest groups, such as Conservative gay men, who wished to obscure the political record of her government in the context of attempts to legitimate their status within their party in the twenty-first century. There has been extensive study of the ways in which movie stars and other public figures have been established as inspirational figures for the gay community, but the example of Thatcher is exceptional in that she was previously widely attacked for presiding over an allegedly homophobic government. The study of the queer afterlife of Margaret Thatcher as a gay icon, therefore, develops understanding of the ways in which the canon of gay iconicity is a contested cultural field.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Britain, gay, homosexuality, icons, Margaret Thatcher, politics
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Historical Studies
    Research Centres and Institutes: Gender and Sexuality, Birkbeck (BiGS), Social Research, Birkbeck Institute for (BISR)
    Depositing User: Dominic Janes
    Date Deposited: 11 Jan 2013 16:19
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:00


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