Queering Bollywood: Alternative Sexualities in Popular Indian Cinema

Gayatri Gopinath & Sandip Roy, English, A Clip Show and Presentation

What does queerness look like on the Bollywood screen? How has Bollywood – the biggest film industry in the world –traditionally encoded same-sex desire? How have these codes changed in the last decade, with the emergence of a more visible queer presence in South Asia? Join academic Gayatri Gopinath and journalist Sandip Roy in a discussion of how popular Indian cinema has historically provided queer audiences rich material for imagining queer lives, desires and pleasures, both in South Asia and in the diaspora. We will explore the ways in which recent shifts in sexual and gender norms in South Asia have both opened up and shut down queer possibilities on the Bollywood screen.

Gayatri Gopinath, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Gender and Sexuality Studies in the Department of Social and Cultural Analysis at New York University. Her work in queer studies, popular culture and the South Asian diaspora has appeared in numerous articles and anthologies, most recently in the Blackwell Companion to LGBT Studies (2008). She is the author of Impossible Desires: Queer Diasporas and South Asian Public Cultures (Duke UP, 2005).

Sandip Roy is an editor with New America Media in San Francisco and host of its radio show UpFront on KALW 91.7 FM. He was the editor of Trikone, the world’s oldest South Asian LGBT magazine for over a decade. He is a commentator for NPR’s Morning Edition and contributes regularly to publications like San Francisco chronicle, India Currents, India Abroad, San Jose Mercury News, and Times of India. His work has appeared in anthologies like Men on Men, Contours of the Heart, Storywallah!, Q&A, A Part Yet apart – South Asians in Asian America, and Because I have a Voice. He has received awards from SAJA, NLGJA and the national federation of community broadcasters.

Saturday, Sept. 27, 2008, 8 PM