Recommend to your Librarian

Request a Review Copy

Irish Queer Cinema

Allison Macleod

Paperback (Forthcoming)
eBook (ePub) i
eBook (PDF) i

An extensive critical study of cinematic representations of Irish queer masculinities

  • Develops innovative spatial models of queer sociality as frameworks for analysing Irish films
  • Provides readings of cinematic space to assess the impact of socio-economic change on Irish identity politics and patterns of cultural representation
  • Uses queer theory to explore the relationship between Irish nationalist discourses, LGBTQ politics in Ireland and the increasing visibility of Irish queer identities on-screen

In recent years queer identities have become increasingly visible in Irish cinema, a shift that can be linked to political, economic and social changes taking place both in Ireland and around the world, as well as to changes in national film policy to cater more to international audiences. Irish Queer Cinema explores the sexual politics and socio-economic conditions that have determined the shape and evolution of these representations whilst interrogating the relationship between on-screen visibility and progressive sexual politics. Drawing together 23 films as depictive of an Irish queer cinema, including Clash of the Ash, The Crying Game and Me First, the book investigates the different ways gender and sexuality intersect with nationhood and national forms of belonging, and explores the role of queerness within the constitution of an Irish national culture.


List of Figures

1. Queerly National and Nationally Queer: Paradoxes of an Irish Queer Cinema
I. Queer
II. Irish
III. Space

2. Mapping Ireland’s Queer Films
I. First Wave Queer Cinema
II. Celtic Tiger Queer Cinema
III. Post-Celtic Tiger Queer Cinema

3. Re-Imagined Kinship and Failed Communities
I. Queering the Family
II. Pigs
III. The Last Bus Home
IV. Conclusion

4. The Contested Space of the Irish Pub
I. The Male Homosocial Space of the Irish Pub
II. A Man of No Importance
III. Garage
III. Conclusion

5: Compartmentalised Cosmopolitans and Rigid Fluidity
I. Cowboys and Angels
II. Goldfish Memory
III. Situating Irish Lesbianism within Urban Space
IV. Conclusion

6. The Queerly Productive Constraints of Rural Space
I. Reefer and the Model
II. Clash of the Ash
III. The Stag
IIV. Conclusion

7. Queer Mobilities and Disassociated Masculinities
I. I Went Down
II. The Disappearance of Finbar and Breakfast on Pluto
III. Conclusion

8. Contested Belongings within Diasporic Space
I. Reconstituting ‘Home’ within Diaspora
II. 2by4
III. Borstal Boy
IV. Conclusion

9. The Irish Queer Short Film
I. The Contestation of Public Space
II. Disrupting Domestic Spaces
III. The Spatiality of Lesbian Desire
IV. Conclusion

10. Concluding Remarks

11. Filmography

12. References


About the Author

Allison Macleod is a researcher in Film Studies whose primary research interests include representations of space and movement in film, the role of the national in shaping cinemas, and queer theory. She has published on issues of sexuality and space in the context of film, with articles in The Canadian Journal of Film Studies, Screen Bodies and Cinephile and a book chapter in Masculinity and Irish Popular Culture: Tiger’s Tales.


A sophisticated and engaging addition to the academic literature on Irish cinema, Irish Queer Cinema offers an impressive series of theoretically informed close textual analyses to trace the development of onscreen queer sexualities over the past 40 years, arguing for an understanding of sexuality in cinema as spatially regulated and produced.

- Conn Holohan, NUI Galway

Irish Queer Cinema offers a new perspective that focuses on queer identities and attends to the textual configuration of space that they entail. Such organisation of the argument, supported by detailed analysis of films that are uniquely brought together in this work, significantly challenges and extends the range of canonical Irish film texts. Avoiding the tired 'representations of ' approach that is too common in studies of national cinemas and writing with admirable lucidity and analytical precision Macleod has produced a sophisticated book that makes an exciting and original contribution to the literature on Irish cinema.

- Professor Dimitris Eleftheriotis, University of Glasgow

You might also like ...