There Goes the Gayborhood? (Princeton Studies in Cultural Sociology)

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9780691158792: There Goes the Gayborhood? (Princeton Studies in Cultural Sociology)
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Selected for the 2015 Over the Rainbow Project book list, American Library Association

"[T]he rise of post-gay culture has introduced a new turmoil in gay neighborhoods: more gay men and women are leaving for suburbs and smaller cities, and more straight people are moving in. . . . Ghaziani doesn't think that this has wiped gayborhoods off the map--hence the question mark in his book's title. . . . Ghaziani's most interesting findings document what is happening beyond the gayborhood, in the new places to which gay men and women are relocating. . . . It's the sort of contradiction that Ghaziani argues lies at the heart of contemporary gay life." --Elizabeth Greenspan, New Yorker

"Ghaziani offers passionate and refreshing insights on a politically charged issue. Taking the 'gayborhood' as his subject, Ghaziani analyzes the phenomenon of 'gay ghettos' using rich statistical data, historical analysis, a comprehensive review of news reports, and in-depth interviews with gays and heterosexuals. The result is a panoramic view of both the dimensions and cultural evolution of the gay neighborhood, and a response to the titular question: are gayborhoods and their once rich cultural vibrancy in decline? Ghaziani's answers refuse easy scapegoats or facile conclusions, and suggest that the cultural evolution of gayborhoods need not entail their demise. He brings much needed nuance to heated debates about the role of gay neighborhoods in wider patterns of gentrification. . . . The findings are not to be missed." --Publishers Weekly

"In an attempt to understand a contemporary, hot-button issue facing iconic gay neighborhoods in flux, Ghaziani mines the roots of 'gayborhoods' to understand where and why they began and the challenges they face. As homosexuality gains wider societal acceptance, are the 'gay ghettos,' once considered bastions of organized solidarity, sexual freedom, and safety from anti-gay bigotry and violence, feeling the pinch? In a book rich with demographical statistics of same-sex-couple households, useful charts and personal interviews, Ghaziani delivers an unbiased perspective carefully weighing the consequences and the benefits of conformity for formerly homogenous gayborhoods countrywide. . . . Encompassing more than just the diminishing homogeneity of gay ghettos, Ghaziani's important work also demonstrates an appreciation for how the provocative past, present and future of gay culture continues to evoke impassioned rhetoric and opinion." --Kirkus Reviews

"A fascinating, rich view that is supported by up-to-date statistics. . . . Recommended for readers with a solid understanding of the history of gay culture who worry about changes to predominantly gay neighborhoods." --Jessica Spears, Library Journal

"Ghaziani believes gayborhoods won't so much disappear as morph into something different: smaller clusters of gay residents gathering together in neighborhoods all over the city. . . . The momentum of dispersal may prove more powerful than the lure of nostalgia in an era of increasing tolerance and a climate of legal equality. But Ghaziani isn't ready to concede. He proclaims his confidence that gay neighborhoods have a future in American cities, even if that future looks much different from the recent past. Whether or not he is right, he is echoing sentiments that have been expressed by a long series of minority groups as they have moved away from the 'old neighborhood' and into a new reality of assimilation in the past century and a half of American urban life." --Alan Ehrenhalt, Governing

"Be careful, as they say, what you wish for. A new book, There Goes the Gayborhood? . . . charts the apparent decline of so-called gay villages such as the Castro in San Francisco and Greenwich Village in New York, a decline, it's suggested, which has come from the very success of the gay movement in being fully accepted into mainstream life. Marriage, adoption, a revolution in public attitudes and sheer visibility have meant that there is simply no longer any need for the solidarity which came from clustering together in particular urban areas." --Peter Whittle, Standpoint

"In There Goes the Gayborhood? . . . Amin Ghaziani vivisects the transformation of these communities, which he labels 'gayborhoods,' as well as the emergence of gay enclaves in other urban precincts, suburbs, and small towns across America. . . . While some LGBT residents are moving out of the gayborhoods, Ghaziani argues that a distinct, place-based gay identity continues to evolve. It's a nuanced and complex tale--a tale of neighborhood changes and cultural shifts, an identity in flux--and Ghaziani does a nice job of telling it." --David L. Kirp, American Prospect

"Ghaziani offers LGBT travelers fascinating insights into the history--and likely future--of some of our most popular urban American destinations. . . . Ghaziani exudes a thoughtful optimism, sketching out the possibilities of a country in which new LGBT neighborhoods emerge and old ones are rebuilt, all on a bedrock of pride rather than discrimination." --Jim Gladstone, Passport Magazine

"Ghaziani has a great subject. . . . Can a gay identity exist without some kind of spatial correlative--the bars that bring people together, the book stores that reflect the histories that inform it? . . . Yes, there is a movement away from established gay neighbourhoods--but that movement is often directed toward laying the foundations of new gay neighbourhoods nearby. . . . The gaybourhood has expanded because the contemporary gay identity has expanded. But while it is a new scene out there, the narrative is an old one. Those in sexual minorities, as with those in the sexual majority, still want only the freedom to love and be loved in their own ways, to be true to their hearts in whatever fashion that assumes--to be, in effect, authentically themselves. To find fulfillment in that aim is, indeed, to discover the end of the rainbow." --John Lownsbrough, Literary Review of Canada

"Because of 'post-gay' neoliberalism and its concomitant gradual assimilation of gays and lesbians into cultural norms, the shouty 'We're here, We're Queer, Get Used to It!' is being supplanted by the whispery apologia 'I may be gay but I'm ethnically straight.' Maybe Dorothy doesn't need Oz any more. . . . [But] Ghaziani argues for the gaybourhood's longevity as an idea of safe space, and I agree. We are still not quite out of Kansas." --Sally R. Munt, Times Higher Education

"In There Goes the Gayborhood? Amin Ghaziani weighs the question of whether gays are becoming more assimilated into general neighborhoods, or whether 'gayborhoods' will survive. . . . Ghaziani concludes that gayborhoods are changing, yet will fulfill a need for some time. Gay acceptance is not universal, safe havens remain necessary and, as Ghaziani points out, similar people, whether ethnically or culturally, tend to stay together." --John B. Saul, Seattle Times

"Ghaziani is actually one of the best sociologists we have working in our field. Years of diligent research undergird this commentary. For every voice he evokes from his arsenal of notes, dozens more lurk silent save for the statistics: quantitative data in sharp tables and graphs suggest a tectonic shift in the geography and demography of our gayborhoods. This is a work to be trusted . . . [and] a timely book, one well-designed for lackeys and laymen alike. If you're looking to gift a good read to a smart friend, Ghaziani is a great way to go." --C. Todd White, Out In Jersey magazine

"[T]he use of a properly placed question mark can serve as a gentle reminder to readers that although an argument may seem straightforward, its intricate details create more questions than the author could ever hope to answer. Amin Ghaziani's There Goes the Gayborhood? is an exhaustive and impressive insider's look into the historical roles and current construction of gayborhoods from an insider's perspective. The book distances itself from broad and supposedly essential narratives that mark the gayborhood as a thing of the past rather than as a continual social and sexual location of the future. . . . [H]is argument has a ripple effect on the ways that people currently view the construction of the modern day metropolis and also what truly makes and defines a city's proverbial heart. . . . Ghaziani's prose is a journey worth taking." --John Erickson, Lambda Literary Review

"[U]nique. . . . [Ghaziani] makes use of a variety of tools--personal interviews, census data, and surveys, among them--to explore what th[e] decentralization [of the gayborhood] means as part of a larger cultural shift." --Choice

"Ghaziani adopts a wide-reaching, diachronic perspective on the rise of gay neighborhoods in the USA, one informed by the analysis of an impressive indeed overwhelming range of statistical data, in support of his findings the author making use of a great deal of census data, from opinion polls to censuses of national gay and lesbian population. . . . In this highly topical well researched work, Ghaziani contributes a broad, cross-disciplinary investigation as well as an in-depth treatment of the future of gaybourhood in urban America, reflecting authoritatively on the new 'cultural archipelagos' of gay enclaves and cisgender identity." --Adriana Neagu, American British Canadian Studies

" There Goes the Gayborhood is an ambitious book and a valuable resource for scholars in sexualities and LGBTQ studies, urban and cultural sociology, and the general public as well. It starts an important conversation about what's happening to gay neighborhoods across the country. Its clear prose and empirical rigor make it deserving of a wide readership in and beyond sociology." --James Joseph Dean, Gender & Society

"First comes love, then comes gay marriage, then comes a straight couple with a baby carriage. In cities across America, local residents and outside observers have become acutely aware that dense, visible, distinct gay neighborhoods seem to be disappearing from the 21st-century urban landscape. Are gay neighborhoods changing? 'Of course they are. . . . Every neighborhood will change at some point,' writes Amin Ghaziani in There Goes the Gayborhood, his breezy, thoughtful . . . new book. But why is it happening, and should anyone care? . . . Ghaziani sees an explanation in the emergence of a 'post-gay' mentality. . . . [He] is right that culture matters, and it will never show up in economic studies." --Christopher Capozzola, Gay and Lesbian Review

"In There Goes the Gayborhood?, American sociologist Amin Ghaziani takes up the question of whether or not the age of the United States gayborhood is over. . . . [He] is responding to a series of American newspaper reports declaring the gayborhood’s demise. . . . The question mark in Ghaziani's title, however, is significant. Rather than finding gayborhoods in decline, what he finds is a process of change: in the meanings of sexuality and in the meanings of urban spaces. . . . A great strength in Ghaziani's book is his handling of [such] questions of change in gay life and urban space. For him, these changes are not some defining end-point to previous identities so much as they are ongoing shifts in always fluid entities." --Scott McKinnon, Australian Review of Public Affairs

"Neighborhoods, like patterns of discrimination, have their moral careers. . . . What then, is happening to the gayborhood? As sociologists are apt to say, it's complicated. But it's complicated in interesting ways. Openly LGBTQ people do live in more places and are less concentrated than they were before. . . . Like the decreasing importance of citizenship in an increasingly globalized world, there seems to be something less and less necessary about geographical belonging. And yet, the declining significance of place can often be deceptive. . . . Ghaziani reminds us how even as LGBTQ people slowly move into the mainstream, place can matter in new ways." --Iddo Tavory, Public Books

"Gayborhood is an excellent resource . . . [The book] presents an intriguing answer to its question. The gayborhood is not simply ‘disappearing,’ but it is transforming and changing. Working with this complex process rather than lamenting a time past is an interesting way to think about queerness and queer identity in a world that is also fluid and changing." --Journal of Homosexuality

Rezension:

"[T]he rise of post-gay culture has introduced a new turmoil in gay neighborhoods: more gay men and women are leaving for suburbs and smaller cities, and more straight people are moving in. . . . Ghaziani doesn't think that this has wiped gayborhoods off the map--hence the question mark in his book's title. . . . Ghaziani's most interesting findings document what is happening beyond the gayborhood, in the new places to which gay men and women are relocating. . . . It's the sort of contradiction that Ghaziani argues lies at the heart of contemporary gay life." --Elizabeth Greenspan, New Yorker

"Ghaziani offers passionate and refreshing insights on a politically charged issue. Taking the 'gayborhood' as his subject, Ghaziani analyzes the phenomenon of 'gay ghettos' using rich statistical data, historical analysis, a comprehensive review of news reports, and in-depth interviews with gays and heterosexuals. The result is a panoramic view of both the dimensions and cultural evolution of the gay neighborhood, and a response to the titular question: are gayborhoods and their once rich cultural vibrancy in decline? Ghaziani's answers refuse easy scapegoats or facile conclusions, and suggest that the cultural evolution of gayborhoods need not entail their demise. He brings much needed nuance to heated debates about the role of gay neighborhoods in wider patterns of gentrification. . . . The findings are not to be missed." --Publishers Weekly

"In an attempt to understand a contemporary, hot-button issue facing iconic gay neighborhoods in flux, Ghaziani mines the roots of 'gayborhoods' to understand where and why they began and the challenges they face. As homosexuality gains wider societal acceptance, are the 'gay ghettos,' once considered bastions of organized solidarity, sexual freedom, and safety from anti-gay bigotry and violence, feeling the pinch? In a book rich with demographical statistics of same-sex-couple households, useful charts and personal interviews, Ghaziani delivers an unbiased perspective carefully weighing the consequences and the benefits of conformity for formerly homogenous gayborhoods countrywide. . . . Encompassing more than just the diminishing homogeneity of gay ghettos, Ghaziani's important work also demonstrates an appreciation for how the provocative past, present and future of gay culture continues to evoke impassioned rhetoric and opinion." --Kirkus Reviews

"A fascinating, rich view that is supported by up-to-date statistics. . . . Recommended for readers with a solid understanding of the history of gay culture who worry about changes to predominantly gay neighborhoods." --Jessica Spears, Library Journal

"Ghaziani believes gayborhoods won't so much disappear as morph into something different: smaller clusters of gay residents gathering together in neighborhoods all over the city. . . . The momentum of dispersal may prove more powerful than the lure of nostalgia in an era of increasing tolerance and a climate of legal equality. But Ghaziani isn't ready to concede. He proclaims his confidence that gay neighborhoods have a future in American cities, even if that future looks much different from the recent past. Whether or not he is right, he is echoing sentiments that have been expressed by a long series of minority groups as they have moved away from the 'old neighborhood' and into a new reality of assimilation in the past century and a half of American urban life." --Alan Ehrenhalt, Governing

"Be careful, as they say, what you wish for. A new book, There Goes the Gayborhood? . . . charts the apparent decline of so-called gay villages such as the Castro in San Francisco and Greenwich Village in New York, a decline, it's suggested, which has come from the very success of the gay movement in being fully accepted into mainstream life. Marriage, adoption, a revolution in public attitudes and sheer visibility have meant that there is simply no longer any need for the solidarity which came from clustering together in particular urban areas." --Peter Whittle, Standpoint

"In There Goes the Gayborhood? . . . Amin Ghaziani vivisects the transformation of these communities, which he labels 'gayborhoods,' as well as the emergence of gay enclaves in other urban precincts, suburbs, and small towns across America. . . . While some LGBT residents are moving out of the gayborhoods, Ghaziani argues that a distinct, place-based gay identity continues to evolve. It's a nuanced and complex tale--a tale of neighborhood changes and cultural shifts, an identity in flux--and Ghaziani does a nice job of telling it." --David L. Kirp, American Prospect

"Ghaziani offers LGBT travelers fascinating insights into the history--and likely future--of some of our most popular urban American destinations. . . . Ghaziani exudes a thoughtful optimism, sketching out the possibilities of a country in which new LGBT neighborhoods emerge and old ones are rebuilt, all on a bedrock of pride rather than discrimination." --Jim Gladstone, Passport Magazine

"Ghaziani has a great subject. . . . Can a gay identity exist without some kind of spatial correlative--the bars that bring people together, the book stores that reflect the histories that inform it? . . . Yes, there is a movement away from established gay neighbourhoods--but that movement is often directed toward laying the foundations of new gay neighbourhoods nearby. . . . The gaybourhood has expanded because the contemporary gay identity has expanded. But while it is a new scene out there, the narrative is an old one. Those in sexual minorities, as with those in the sexual majority, still want only the freedom to love and be loved in their own ways, to be true to their hearts in whatever fashion that assumes--to be, in effect, authentically themselves. To find fulfillment in that aim is, indeed, to discover the end of the rainbow." --John Lownsbrough, Literary Review of Canada

"Because of 'post-gay' neoliberalism and its concomitant gradual assimilation of gays and lesbians into cultural norms, the shouty 'We're here, We're Queer, Get Used to It!' is being supplanted by the whispery apologia 'I may be gay but I'm ethnically straight.' Maybe Dorothy doesn't need Oz any more. . . . [But] Ghaziani argues for the gaybourhood's longevity as an idea of safe space, and I agree. We are still not quite out of Kansas." --Sally R. Munt, Times Higher Education

"In There Goes the Gayborhood? Amin Ghaziani weighs the question of whether gays are becoming more assimilated into general neighborhoods, or whether 'gayborhoods' will survive. . . . Ghaziani concludes that gayborhoods are changing, yet will fulfill a need for some time. Gay acceptance is not universal, safe havens remain necessary and, as Ghaziani points out, similar people, whether ethnically or culturally, tend to stay together." --John B. Saul, Seattle Times

"Ghaziani is actually one of the best sociologists we have working in our field. Years of diligent research undergird this commentary. For every voice he evokes from his arsenal of notes, dozens more lurk silent save for the statistics: quantitative data in sharp tables and graphs suggest a tectonic shift in the geography and demography of our gayborhoods. This is a work to be trusted . . . [and] a timely book, one well-designed for lackeys and laymen alike. If you're looking to gift a good read to a smart friend, Ghaziani is a great way to go." --C. Todd White, Out In Jersey magazine

"[T]he use of a properly placed question mark can serve as a gentle reminder to readers that although an argument may seem straightforward, its intricate details create more questions than the author could ever hope to answer. Amin Ghaziani's There Goes the Gayborhood? is an exhaustive and impressive insider's look into the historical roles and current construction of gayborhoods from an insider's perspective. The book distances itself from broad and supposedly essential narratives that mark the gayborhood as a thing of the past rather than as a continual social and sexual location of the future. . . . [H]is argument has a ripple effect on the ways that people currently view the construction of the modern day metropolis and also what truly makes and defines a city's proverbial heart. . . . Ghaziani's prose is a journey worth taking." --John Erickson, Lambda Literary Review

"[U]nique. . . . [Ghaziani] makes use of a variety of tools--personal interviews, census data, and surveys, among them--to explore what th[e] decentralization [of the gayborhood] means as part of a larger cultural shift." --Choice

"Ghaziani adopts a wide-reaching, diachronic perspective on the rise of gay neighborhoods in the USA, one informed by the analysis of an impressive indeed overwhelming range of statistical data, in support of his findings the author making use of a great deal of census data, from opinion polls to censuses of national gay and lesbian population. . . . In this highly topical well researched work, Ghaziani contributes a broad, cross-disciplinary investigation as well as an in-depth treatment of the future of gaybourhood in urban America, reflecting authoritatively on the new 'cultural archipelagos' of gay enclaves and cisgender identity." --Adriana Neagu, American British Canadian Studies

" There Goes the Gayborhood is an ambitious book and a valuable resource for scholars in sexualities and LGBTQ studies, urban and cultural sociology, and the general public as well. It starts an important conversation about what's happening to gay neighborhoods across the country. Its clear prose and empirical rigor make it deserving of a wide readership in and beyond sociology." --James Joseph Dean, Gender & Society

"First comes love, then comes gay marriage, then comes a straight couple with a baby carriage. In cities across America, local residents and outside observers have become acutely aware that dense, visible, distinct gay neighborhoods seem to be disappearing from the 21st-century urban landscape. Are gay neighborhoods changing? 'Of course they are. . . . Every neighborhood will change at some point,' writes Amin Ghaziani in There Goes the Gayborhood, his breezy, thoughtful . . . new book. But why is it happening, and should anyone care? . . . Ghaziani sees an explanation in the emergence of a 'post-gay' mentality. . . . [He] is right that culture matters, and it will never show up in economic studies." --Christopher Capozzola, Gay and Lesbian Review

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