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Queering the Orientalist porn package: Arab men in French gay pornography

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This article charts the shift in focus from orientalist to postcolonial porn production in the French context. We set contemporary digital video production by local studio Citbeur against old-school racial fetish porn made famous by Jean-Daniel Cadinot (Harem, 1984) and later by Jean-Nol Ren Clair in the Studio Beurs series. Unlike the blatant sexual tourism of the colonialist porn produced by Cadinot and JNRC, we argue here that Citbeur marks a break with the exploitative gaze of white pornographers intent on hunting out niche markets for the expanding sector of ethnic pornography. In short, there is a radical shift in focus from the neo-colonial sex and class tourism in Cadinot and JNRC to the multi-ethnic independent production of studio Citbeur, in which the gay beur subculture attempts to mark both a visual distance from stereotypical imagery of Arab masculinity as savage and a political distance from institutional gay culture.

Keywords: Arab masculinities; Citbeur studio; French gay pornography; Jean-Daniel Cadinot; Jean-Nol Ren Clair; postcolonial pornography

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: University of Paris 1 Panthon Sorbonne. 2: University of Bristol.

Publication date: 2009-02-01

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