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‘My coming out story’ Lesbian, gay and bisexual youth identities on YouTube.pdf (552.48 kB)

‘My Coming Out Story’: Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Youth Identities on YouTube

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-01-21, 09:58 authored by Michael Lovelock
Videos in which young lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people discuss their experiences of coming out are highly visible on YouTube. Whilst work from Cultural Studies perspectives has long explored how LGB youth construct and articulate their identities online, few studies have focused on YouTube. Through a study of 35 YouTube coming out videos, this article argues that through these texts, LGB youth are able to articulate what it feels like to be queer in a straight world, and produce and circulate strategies for negotiating a contemporary cultural context defined by increased visibility of LGB identities, alongside the continued dominance of heteronormativity. These strategies, I argue, correspond with broader imperatives to ‘authentic’ self-representation which traverse contemporary social life, and which are emblematised in practises of YouTube video production. As such, YouTube coming out videos offer a unique vantage for exploring how the medium specificies of YouTube, and broader norms of selfhood, shape how LGB identities become intelligible in the digital arena


Published in

International Journal of Cultural Studies



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  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)


Lovelock, M. (2019) ‘My coming out story’: Lesbian, gay and bisexual youth identities on YouTube. International Journal of Cultural Studies, 22(1), pp.70-85.

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Cardiff Met Affiliation

  • Cardiff School of Education and Social Policy

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