O rock do homem hétero branco vs. a disco das divas e dos gays

Textinho que o Bryan (não conhece?? Passa lá na Realejo pra conhecer pessoalmente) me mandou por e-mail:

But the real animosity between rock and disco lay in the position of the straight white male. In the rock world, he was the undisputed top, while in disco, he was subject to a radical decentering. Disco was an extended conversation between black women female divas and gay men. Straight men were welcome to join the party, but only if they learned the lingo. Some did, but for many, this new demand aroused a kind of ‘castration anxiety’, as Alice Echols put it in a 1994 essay. Disco symbolized a world where straight men were not only expected to engender the female orgasm, but to incorporate it.

Only by killing disco could rock affirm its threatened masculinity and restore the holy dyad of cold brew and undemanding sex partners. Disco bashing became a major preoccupation in 1977. At the moment when Saturday Night Fever and Studio 54 achieved zeitgeist status, rock rediscovered a rage it had been lacking since the ’60s, but this time the enemy was a culture with ‘plastic’ and “mindless” (read effeminate) musical tastes. Examined in light of the ensuing political backlash, it’s clear that the slogan of this movement—”“Disco Sucks!”—was the first cry of the angry white male.

The rock/disco wars might seem silly in retrospect if it weren’t for the deadly seriousness with which they were waged at the time. In a 1979 end-of-year summation, Rolling Stone,the index of cultural regression, surveyed the field of battle like military strategists: ‘You can say that the first six months [of 1979] belonged to disco… and that the last six months belonged to the brave young rockers’. The turning point was the July ‘Disco Demolition’ rally in Chicago’s Comiskey Park. The event’s original gimmick involved blowing up disco records between games of a doubleheader, but the charged-up crowd lost control and began tearing up the stadium. Comiskey turned into a giant coded gay bashing, a frightening harbinger of an enraged, homophobic America, given sanction in the mock-patriotic venue of a baseball stadium.

By 1980, disco had become a dirty word. The term was banished from the language as an added security measure, but the music was exported to England, where it was de-gayed and re-exported to the States under a new name: ‘new wave dance music’. The rock majority was satisfied by the replacement of explicitly gay Sylvester with flamboyantly closeted Boy George. As the playlist segued from ‘I’m Coming Out’ into ‘Do You Really Want To Hurt Me’, the pulverization of the liberal imagination became a political fact. Ronald Reagan was elected president, and the following June, a mysterious new ‘gay cancer’ appeared.

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