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The Battle over MarriageGay Rights Activism through the Media$
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Leigh Moscowitz

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780252038129

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252038129.001.0001

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“The Marrying Kind”

“The Marrying Kind”

The Face of Gay Marriage in the News

(p.53) 3. “The Marrying Kind”
The Battle over Marriage

Leigh Moscowitz

University of Illinois Press

This chapter examines the extent of gay rights activists' success in framing the gay marriage debate and in producing their preferred images for the news media. It first describes the linguistic and visual devices that news entities relied upon to represent gay and lesbian couples as “deserving” of marriage. It then explores how markers of gender, class, race, lifestyle, and sexuality were deployed to construct the human face of gay marriage and goes on to discuss the ways in which gay marriage ceremonies were ritualized and symbolized in news narratives. It also shows how “poster couples” selected by news producers and gay rights activists were legitimated in news narratives, but were also cast as “different” from the more “radical” community of non-married gays, relegating particular LGBT and queer identities to the margins. The chapter concludes by considering how news stories and images work together to produce new forms of gay desire.

Keywords:   gay rights activists, gay marriage, news media, gender, class, race, sexuality, gay marriage ceremonies, gay desire

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