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The Cinematic Bodies of Eastern Europe and RussiaBetween Pain and Pleasure$
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Ewa Mazierska, Matilda Mroz, and Elzbieta Ostrowska

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781474405140

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474405140.001.0001

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Queering Masculinity in Yugoslav Socialist Realist Films

Queering Masculinity in Yugoslav Socialist Realist Films

(p.132) Chapter 6 Queering Masculinity in Yugoslav Socialist Realist Films
The Cinematic Bodies of Eastern Europe and Russia

Nebojša Jovanović

Edinburgh University Press

The chapter analyzes queer male bodies in the Yugoslav socialist realist cinema, from the late 1940s to the early 1950s, in order to challenge the views that relegate cinema of that period to the handmaiden of the totalitarian ideology. In order to elaborate my point, I explore the corporeal dimension of the queer representations of masculinity in the three films from the first decade of Yugoslav cinema. Život je naš (Life is Ours, Gustav Gavrin, 1948) raises the issue of the rendering the blurry zone between homosexuality and homosociality, Crveni cvet (Red Flower, Gustav Gavrin, 1953) boasts the very first case of gender cross-dressing in Yugoslav cinema, whereas Bakonja fra Brne (Monk Brne’s Pupilii, Fedor Hanžeković, 1954) features the first protagonist who is unmistakably coded as a homosexual. The queering of these films substantially questions the scholarly narratives that posit the notion that the Yugoslav filmmakers were in cahoots with the socialist ideologues in the joint project of degrading the homosexuality as such.

Keywords:   Socialist realism, queer, masculinity

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