A White City Turned Pink: Tel Aviv as Israel’s Homonormative LGBTQ+ Flagship.

Stallone, Sabrina (2019). A White City Turned Pink: Tel Aviv as Israel’s Homonormative LGBTQ+ Flagship. Queer Media and Popular Culture, 4(3), pp. 257-270. Intellect 10.1386/qsmpc_00011_1

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In recent years, the reputation of the so-called 'White City' Tel Aviv as one of the global gay capitals has been disseminated and upheld by mainstream media. This article builds upon existing analyses of Israel's supposed liberalness towards non-normative lifestyles and its strong links to the phenomenon of pinkwashing. The term has come to signify the glossing over of Israeli settler colonial occupation that specifically directs attention to Israel's progressive LGBTQ rights by juxtaposition with a narrative of queer oppression among Palestinian communities. Looking at a range of media representations, such as Jake Witzenfeld's 2015 documentary Oriented and the mediatized phenomena of Tel Aviv Pride and LGBTQ-friendly Birthright Trips, I explore how these narratives ultimately contribute towards shaping Tel Aviv as an exclusionary urban space, inaccessible to those subjects who do not comply or fit with a securitized and corporatized new normal. By using a critical approach to the city's founding discourse, and the more recent Israeli state's ethno-nationalist investments towards branding Tel Aviv as a queer city, I argue that non-(homo)normative members of the LGBTQ community, and especially Palestinians, are silenced and pushed further away from what is constructed as the queer subject in the 'White City' space.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of Art and Cultural Studies > Institute of Social Anthropology

UniBE Contributor:

Stallone, Sabrina


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology








Anja Julienne Wohlgemuth

Date Deposited:

24 Mar 2020 12:25

Last Modified:

24 Mar 2020 12:25

Publisher DOI:




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