Thomas Waugh

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Thomas Waugh
Born1948 (age 7071)
London, Ontario
OccupationAcademic, Author, Critic, Programmer, Activist
Notable worksShow Us Life: Towards a History and Aesthetics of the Committed Documentary

Hard to Imagine: Gay Male Eroticism in Photography and Film from Their Beginnings to Stonewall
The Romance of Transgression in Canada: Queering Sexualities, Nations, Cinemas


Conscience of Cinema: The Work of Joris Ivens, 1912-1989

Thomas Waugh is a Canadian critic, programmer, lecturer, author, actor, and activist, [1] [2] [3] best known for his extensive work on documentary film and eroticism in the history of LGBTQIA2+ cinema and art. [4] A distinguished professor emeritus at Concordia University, [5] he taught 41 years in the film studies program of the School of Cinema and held a research chair in documentary film and sexual representation. He was also the director of the Concordia HIV/AIDS Project, 1993-2017, a program providing a platform for research and conversations involving HIV/AIDS in the Montréal area. [6]

Canada Country in North America

Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Its southern border with the United States, stretching some 8,891 kilometres (5,525 mi), is the world's longest bi-national land border. Canada's capital is Ottawa, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.

Concordia University university in Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Concordia University is a public comprehensive research university located in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Founded in 1974 following the merger of Loyola College and Sir George Williams University, Concordia is one of the three universities in Quebec where English is the primary language of instruction. As of the 2018-19 academic year, there were 46,829 students enrolled in credit courses at Concordia, making the university among the largest in Canada by enrollment. The university has two campuses, set approximately 7 kilometres apart: Sir George Williams Campus is the main campus, located in Downtown Montreal in an area known as Quartier Concordia; and Loyola Campus in the residential district of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce. With four faculties, a school of graduate studies and numerous colleges, centres and institutes, Concordia offers over 300 undergraduate and 100 graduate programs and courses.

Film studies academic discipline that deals with various theoretical, historical, and critical approaches to films

Film studies is an academic discipline that deals with various theoretical, historical, and critical approaches to films. It is sometimes subsumed within media studies and is often compared to television studies. Film studies is less concerned with advancing proficiency in film production than it is with exploring the narrative, artistic, cultural, economic, and political implications of the cinema. In searching for these social-ideological values, film studies takes a series of critical approaches for the analysis of production, theoretical framework, context, and creation. In this sense the film studies discipline exists as one in which the teacher does not always assume the primary educator role; the featured film itself serves that function. Also, in studying film, possible careers include critic or production. Film theory often includes the study of conflicts between the aesthetics of visual Hollywood and the textual analysis of screenplay. Overall the study of film continues to grow, as does the industry on which it focuses. Academic journals publishing film studies work include Sight & Sound, Film International, CineAction, Screen, Cinema Journal, Film Quarterly and Journal of Film and Video.

A graduate of Columbia University, he wrote film criticism and history articles for publications such as Jump Cut and The Body Politic before publishing his first book, Show Us Life: Towards a History and Aesthetics of the Committed Documentary, in 1984.

Columbia University Private Ivy League research university in New York City

Columbia University is a private Ivy League research university in New York City. Established in 1754 near the Upper West Side region of Manhattan, Columbia is the oldest institution of higher education in New York and the fifth-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. It is one of nine colonial colleges founded prior to the Declaration of Independence, seven of which belong to the Ivy League. It has been ranked by numerous major education publications as among the top ten universities in the world.

Jump Cut: A Review of Contemporary Media is an online journal covering the analysis of film, television, video, and related media.

<i>The Body Politic</i> (magazine)

The Body Politic was a Canadian monthly magazine, which was published from 1971 to 1987. It was one of Canada's first significant gay publications, and played a prominent role in the development of the LGBT community in Canada.

His 1996 book, Hard to Imagine: Gay Male Eroticism in Photography and Film from Their Beginnings to Stonewall, took 13 years to research and write. [7] Its release was delayed eight full months after its initial planned publication date, due to difficulty finding a printer willing to handle the book's sexually explicit homoerotic imagery. [8]

He is a two-time Lambda Literary Award nominee, garnering nominations in the Visual Arts category at the 15th Lambda Literary Awards in 2003 for Out/Lines: Underground Gay Graphics From Before Stonewall, [9] and at the 17th Lambda Literary Awards in 2005 for Lust Unearthed: Vintage Gay Graphics from the DuBek Collection. [10] He is also the recipient of the SCMS (Society for Cinema and Media Studies) Katherine Singer Kovacs Book Award for The Conscience of Cinema: The Work of Joris Ivens, 1912-1989.

Lambda Literary Award award for published works which celebrate or explore LGBT themes

Lambda Literary Awards, also known as the "Lammys", are awarded yearly by the U.S.-based Lambda Literary Foundation to published works which celebrate or explore LGBT themes. Categories include Humor, Romance and Biography. To qualify, a book must have been published in the United States in the year current to the award. The Lambda Literary Foundation states that its mission is "to celebrate LGBT literature and provide resources for writers, readers, booksellers, publishers, and librarians – the whole literary community." The awards were instituted in 1988.

The 15th Lambda Literary Awards were held in 2003 to honour works of LGBT literature published in 2002.

The 17th Lambda Literary Awards were held in 2005 to honour works of LGBT literature published in 2004.

Waugh has also served on the board of Cinema Politica, [11] has been active with the Quebec Gay Archives, [12] and is coeditor with Matthew Hays of the Queer Film Classics series of 19 monographs on LGBT film, published by Arsenal Pulp Press. [13] In 2013 Waugh, Ryan Conrad and Cinema Politica raised funds on Indiegogo to produce and distribute a documentary film about the Russian LGBT organization Children-404. [14]

Cinema Politica is a non-profit media arts organization based in Montreal with nearly 100 screening locations all over the world. Each chapter ("local") screens independent political documentaries for free or by donation to audiences, with guest filmmakers and speakers often invited to participate. Cinema Politica claims to be the "largest volunteer-run, community and campus-based documentary-screening network in the world."

The Quebec Gay Archives is a nonprofit organization dedicated to documenting the history of the gay and lesbian communities of the Canadian province of Quebec. Founded in 1983 and located in Montreal, the QGA maintains collections of periodicals, newspapers, press clippings, book, videocassettes, DVDs, posters, photos and archival materials. Its collection includes the photographic canon of Alan B. Stone, which reflects the life's work of the notable Montreal "beefcake" photographer, as well as one of the few surviving copies of the historic LGBT publication Les Mouches Fantastiques.

Matthew Hays is a Canadian film critic, writer, film festival programmer and academic. He won a Lambda Literary Award for his 2007 book The View from Here: Conversations with Gay and Lesbian Filmmakers.

In 2010, Waugh and filmmaker Kim Simard launched the Queer Media Database Canada-Québec, an online database project to collect and publish information about LGBT films and videos made in Canada and the personalities involved in their creation. [15] The project was based in part on his 2006 book The Romance of Transgression in Canada: Queering Sexualities, Nations, Cinemas.


Related Research Articles

Homoeroticism sexual attraction between members of the same sex

Homoeroticism is sexual attraction between members of the same sex, either male–male or female–female. The concept differs from the concept of homosexuality: it refers specifically to the desire itself, which can be temporary, whereas "homosexuality" implies a more permanent state of identity or sexual orientation. It is a much older concept than the 19th century idea of homosexuality, and is depicted or manifested throughout the history of the visual arts and literature. It can also be found in performative forms; from theatre to the theatricality of uniformed movements. According to Oxford English Dictionary, it's "pertaining to or characterized by a tendency for erotic emotions to be centered on a person of the same sex; or pertaining to a homo-erotic person."

LGBT themes in horror fiction refers to sexuality in horror fiction that can often focus on LGBT characters and themes. It may deal with characters who are coded as or who are openly LGBT, or it may deal with themes or plots that are specific to homosexual people. Depending on when it was made, it may contain open statements of sexuality, same-sex sexual imagery, same-sex love or affection or simply a sensibility that has special meaning to LGBT people.

<i>Winter Kept Us Warm</i> 1965 film by David Secter

Winter Kept Us Warm is a Canadian romantic drama film, released in 1965. The title comes from the fifth line of T. S. Eliot's The Waste Land.

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Rodrigue Jean is a Canadian film director and screenwriter of Acadian origin. He studied biology, sociology and literature. He was a dancer and choreographer in the 1980s. He then studied theatre and directing in London and Tokyo.

Daniel Allen Cox is a Canadian author and screenwriter. Cox's novels Shuck and Krakow Melt were both finalists for the Lambda Literary Award and the ReLit Award.

Ivan E. Coyote is a Canadian spoken word performer, writer, and LGBT advocate. Coyote has won many accolades for their collections of short stories, novels, and films. Coyote also visits schools to tell stories and give writing workshops. The CBC has called Coyote a "gender-bending author who loves telling stories and performing in front of a live audience." Coyote is non-binary and uses singular they pronouns. Many of Coyote's stories are about gender, identity, and social justice. Some of their favorite books are Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy and The Chronology of Water by Lidia Yuknavitch. Coyote currently resides in Vancouver, BC.

Although same-sex sexual activity was illegal in Canada up to 1969, gay and lesbian themes appear in Canadian literature throughout the 20th century. Canada is now regarded as one of the most advanced countries in legal recognition of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights.

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Peter Dubé is a Canadian writer, who has published novels, short stories and essays. Originally from Montreal, he earned an MA from Concordia University's Creative Writing Program.

Richard Labonté is a Canadian writer and editor, best known as the editor or co-editor of numerous anthologies of LGBT literature.

Michael Bronski is an American academic and writer, best known for his 2011 book A Queer History of the United States. He has been involved with LGBT politics since 1969 as an activist and organizer.

<i>A Queer History of the United States</i> book by Michael Bronski

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Image+Nation is an annual film festival, which takes place in Montreal, Quebec. Held in November each year, the festival is dedicated to LGBTQ film.

Bisexual literature is a subgenre of LGBT Literature that includes literary works and authors that address the topic of bisexuality or biromanticism. This includes characters, plot lines, and/or themes portraying bisexual behavior in both men and women.

The Pinco Triangle is a Canadian documentary film, directed by Patrick Crowe and Tristan R. Whiston and released in 1999. A profile of LGBT life in Sudbury, Ontario, the film mixes interviews with past and present LGBT residents of the city with vignettes depicting aspects of the directors' own childhoods in the city, acted by a cast including Michael "Bitch Diva" Fitzgerald and Lorraine Segato. The film takes its name from blending the pink triangle, a common LGBT symbol, with the INCO Triangle, the former employee magazine of INCO's mining operations in Sudbury.


  1. |name=xtra>Daniel Allen Cox
  2. Waugh, Thomas (8 August 2019). "My Coming Out: 'I'm Afraid This Letter Is Going To Cause You Both A Lot Of Pain". Montreal Gazette.
  3. "Naked Lunch: An interview with Thomas Waugh". Xtra! , January 5, 2010.
  4. "Naked Lunch: An interview with Thomas Waugh". Xtra! , January 5, 2010.
  5. "Filling the void of LGBT cultural amnesia; Concordia profs at the helm of book series revisiting 21 influential movies". Montreal Gazette , January 25, 2012.
  6. Braganza, Chantal (January 14, 2015). "The evolution of porn studies". University Affairs. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
  7. "Behind shocking gay photos, this is a serious study". Edmonton Journal , November 30, 1996.
  8. "Gay history fit to print: Book slated for sale by early November". The Globe and Mail , September 26, 1996.
  9. "15th Lambda Literary Awards". Lambda Literary Foundation, July 9, 2003.
  10. "17th Lambda Literary Awards". Lambda Literary Foundation, July 9, 2005.
  11. "Cinema should encourage debate". National Post , March 19, 2010.
  12. "Making things perfectly queer". Concordia News, March 1, 2013.
  13. "Queer Film Classics Film Book Series ed. by Thomas Waugh, Matthew Hays (review)". Journal of Film and Video (Volume 66, Number 2), Summer 2014. pp. 48-50.
  14. "Russian film about LGBTQ youth seeks funds". Windy City Times , November 5, 2013.
  15. "Online database of queer Canadian movies launching at Toronto Pride". The Globe and Mail , June 24, 2015.