No Rainbows, No Ruby Slippers, But a Pen


memorandum 2018.08.18

Two days ago, I attended a study group on queer studies at Doshisha University. I hadn't had a chance to participate in it ever since I moved to Tokyo. But thankfully the work schedule during summer allowed me to return to Kyoto for a few days.


There were five presentations by graduate students from universities in Kansai and Kyushu regions. Despite some difficulties that they seemed to be having with rules of presentation manners, I learned a lot from their presentations. Some were especially informative and their discussions were so richly structured that I felt embarrased as I looked back on the level of research I was able to conduct in the early stage of the master's program.


One of the things I gained from the study group was a sense of assurance that there is no such thing as LGBT films. Of course, we do see the term "LGBT films" in film reviews, but except for a very few examples, it is hardly that a so-called LGBT film depicts lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgenders at the same time. There are lesbian films or gay films, but no "LGBT" films. It is still difficult for me to explain what queer films are. Yet, I guess what is important to keep reminding myself is that queer is an attitude or a view that aims to provoke and subvert norms.