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In this chapter, Lisa B. Thompson analyzes Jeffrey Q. McCune Jr.’s play Dancin’ the Down Low. She posits that the play queers traditional notions of black masculinity, paying particular attention to the various functions of the play’s dancing metaphor. In the end, Thompson applauds the play’s inclusion of black women but submits that the play could offer more nuanced representations of black female experience, sexuality, and desire.

In this chapter, John Keene interviews Dancin’ the Down Low creator Jeffrey Q. McCune Jr. McCune discusses his intellectual and artistic trajectory and asserts that his performance work is a form of activism. He contends, for example, that DL men being blamed for the rise of new cases of HIV/AIDS among heterosexual black women motivated him to write a play that would counter that discourse.

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