Queerness as Authenticity in Reality TV

  • Michael Lovelock


Lovelock conceptualises a compelling new way to understand queer representation in reality TV: compulsory authenticity. Through case studies including Big Brother, Boy Meets Boy and America’s Next Top Model, this chapter argues that reality TV has challenged traditional understandings of TV audiences as always heterosexual. Instead, reality TV has crafted a worldview in which the determination to be true to one’s apparently ‘authentic’ self unites members of contemporary societies. Lovelock argues that because reality shows maintain that ‘real’ selves can be concealed or suppressed, and assert the importance of being authentic, they question heteronormative assumptions that everyone is straight. The chapter concludes by suggesting that reality TV can be interpreted as queer utopia which imagines of a more equal world for sex and gender minorities.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Lovelock
    • 1
  1. 1.Ho Chi Minh CityVietnam

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