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date: 19 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter pushes for a broad revision of Canadian national cinemas, arguing for queerness as their privileged mode of expression. The prominence of queerness in the Canadian cinematic imaginary is explored throughout four sections that demonstrate the uniqueness of Canadian cinemas over examples of queer cinema elsewhere. First, the roots of queer cinema/cinema queered in Canada are located in the work of pre-Stonewall pioneers such as Claude Jutra, Norman McLaren, and David Secter. Second, queerness is seen informing the institutional and political structures of Canadian cinema through practices of activism around identities, intersectionality, and serostatus. Third, queerness is recentered in the oeuvre of the nonqueer auteurs Atom Egoyan, David Cronenberg, and Denys Arcand, as a synonym for sexual fluidity and a symptom of sexual/national anxiety. Finally, the contributions of Léa Pool, John Greyson, Thirza Cuthand, and Xavier Dolan uncover the intersectional heritage and souls of contemporary queer Canadian cinemas.

Keywords: sexual representation, Queer cinema, Queer nation, AIDS representation, Xavier Dolan, John Greyson, Thirza Cuthand, Claude Jutra, Norman McLaren, Léa Pool

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