A hard-hitting look at the regulation of sexual difference and its role in circumscribing African American culture.
The sociology of race relations in America typically describes an intersection of poverty, race, and economic discrimination. But what is missing from the picture--sexual difference--can be as instructive as what is present. In this ambitious work, Roderick A. Ferguson reveals how the discourses of sexuality are used to articulate theories of racial difference in the field of sociology. He shows how canonical sociology--Gunnar Myrdal, Ernest Burgess, Robert Park, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, and William Julius Wilson--has measured African Americans' unsuitability for a liberal capitalist order in terms of their adherence to the norms of a heterosexual and patriarchal nuclear family model. In short, to the extent that African Americans' culture and behavior deviated from those norms, they would not achieve economic and racial equality.
Aberrations in Black tells the story of canonical sociology's regulation of sexual difference as part of its general regulation of African American culture. Ferguson places this story within other stories--the narrative of capital's emergence and development, the histories of Marxism and revolutionary nationalism, and the novels that depict the gendered and sexual idiosyncrasies of African American culture--works by Richard Wright, Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin, Audre Lorde, and Toni Morrison. In turn, this book tries to present another story--one in which people who presumably manifest the dysfunctions of capitalism are reconsidered as indictments of the norms of state, capital, and social science. Ferguson includes the first-ever discussion of a new archival discovery--a never-published chapter of Invisible Man that deals with a gay character in a way that complicates and illuminates Ellison's project.
Unique in the way it situates critiques of race, gender, and sexuality within analyses of cultural, economic, and epistemological formations, Ferguson's work introduces a new mode of discourse--which Ferguson calls queer of color analysis--that helps to lay bare the mutual distortions of racial, economic, and sexual portrayals within sociology.
Roderick A. Ferguson is assistant professor of American studies at the University of Minnesota.
Jimmy Creech, a United Methodist pastor in North Carolina, was visited one morning in 1984 by Adam, a longtime parishioner whom he liked and respected. Adam said that he was gay, and that he was leaving The United Methodist Church, which had just pronounced that “self-avowed practicing homosexuals” could not be ordained. He would not be part of a community that excluded him. Creech found himself instinctively supporting Adam, telling him that he was sure that God loved and accepted him as he was. Adam’s Gift is Creech’s inspiring first-person account of how that conversation transformed his life and ministry.
Adam’s visit prompted Creech to re-evaluate his belief that homosexuality was a sin, and to research the scriptural basis for the church’s position. He determined that the church was mistaken, that scriptural translations and interpretations had been botched and dangerously distorted. As a Christian, Creech came to believe that discriminating against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people was morally wrong. This understanding compelled him to perform same-gender commitment ceremonies, which conflicted with church directives. Creech was tried twice by The United Methodist Church, and, after the second trial, his ordination credentials were revoked. Adam’s Gift is a moving story and an important chapter in the unfinished struggle for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender civil and human rights.
There have been few book-length engagements with the question of sexuality in Africa, let alone African homosexuality. African Intimacies simultaneously responds to the public debate on the “Africanness” of homosexuality and interrogates the meaningfulness of the terms “sexuality” and “homosexuality” outside Euro-American discourse. Speculating on cultural practices interpreted by missionaries as sodomy and resistance to colonialism, Neville Hoad begins by analyzing the 1886 Bugandan martyrs incident—the execution of thirty men in the royal court. Then, in a series of close readings, he addresses questions of race, sex, and globalization in the 1965 Wole Soyinka novel The Interpreters, examines the emblematic 1998 Lambeth conference of Anglican bishops, considers the imperial legacy in depictions of the HIV/AIDS crisis, and reveals how South African writer Phaswane Mpe’s contemporary novel Welcome to Our Hillbrow problematizes notions of African identity and cosmopolitanism.Hoad’s assessment of the historical valence of homosexuality in Africa shows how the category has served a key role in a larger story, one in which sexuality has been made in line with a vision of white Western truth, limiting an understanding of intimacy that could imagine an African universalism.Neville Hoad is assistant professor of English at the University of Texas, Austin.
Focused on the intimate effects of large-scale economic transformations, After Love illuminates the ways that everyday efforts to imagine, resist, and enact market reforms shape sexual desires and subjectivities. Anthropologist Noelle M. Stout arrived in Havana in 2002 to study the widely publicized emergence of gay tolerance in Cuba but discovered that the sex trade was dominating everyday discussions among gays, lesbians, and travestis. Largely eradicated after the Revolution, sex work, including same-sex prostitution, exploded in Havana when the island was opened to foreign tourism in the early 1990s. The booming sex trade led to unprecedented encounters between Cuban gays and lesbians, and straight male sex workers and foreign tourists. As many gay Cuban men in their thirties and forties abandoned relationships with other gay men in favor of intimacies with straight male sex workers, these bonds complicated ideas about "true love" for queer Cubans at large. From openly homophobic hustlers having sex with urban gays for room and board, to lesbians disparaging sex workers but initiating relationships with foreign men for money, to gay tourists espousing communist rhetoric while handing out Calvin Klein bikini briefs, the shifting economic terrain raised fundamental questions about the boundaries between labor and love in late-socialist Cuba.
Splashed against the tumultuous Clinton years and framed by the clash between gay political might and anti-gay activism, All the Rage presents the first authoritative guide to the new gay visibility. From the public outing of Ellen DeGeneres to the vicious murder of Matthew Shepard, gay lives and images have moved onto the center stage of American public life. Lesbians and gay men are indeed everywhere, from television sitcoms to Budweiser ads, from the White House to the Magic Kingdom. Combining personal stories with incisive analysis, Suzanna Danuta Walters chronicles this historic moment in our culture, arguing that we live in a time when gays are seen, but not necessarily known.
Many consider the new gay visibility a sign of social acceptance, while others charge that it is mere window dressing, obscuring the dogged persistence of discrimination. Walters moves beyond these positions and instead argues that these realities coexist: gays are simultaneously depicted as the sign of social decay and the chic flavor of the month. Taking on the common wisdom that visibility means progress, All the Rage maps the terrain on which gays are accepted as witty accessories in movies, gain access to political power, and yet still fall into constrictive stereotypes. Walters warns us with clarity and wit of the pitfalls of equating visibility with full integration into the fabric of American society. From the playful TV fantasies of lesbian weddings on Friends to the very real obstacles confronting gay marriage, from the award-winning comedy Will & Grace to Bible-thumping radio superhost Dr. Laura, All the Rage takes on naive celebrants and jaded naysayers alike. With a sophisticated mix of caution and optimism, it provides an illuminating guide through these exciting, controversial times.
Stephen O. Murray University of Chicago Press, 1996 Library of Congress HQ76.3.N67M87 1996 | Dewey Decimal 306.766097
American Gay is an investigation into how people have been gay or lesbian in America. Murray examines the emergence of gay and lesbian social life, the creation of lesbigay communities, and the forces of resistance that have mobilized and fostered a group identity. Murray also considers the extent to which there is a single "modern" homosexuality and the enormous range of homosexual behaviors, typifications, self-identifications and meanings.
Murray's erudite scholarship challenges prevailing assumptions about gay history and society. He questions conventional wisdom about the importance of World War II and the Stonewall riots for conceiving and challenging shared oppression. He reviews gay complicity in the repathologizing of homosexuality during the early years of the AIDS epidemic. Discussing recent demands for inclusion in the "straight" institutions of marriage and the US military, he concludes that these are new forms of resistance, not attempts to assimilate. Finally, Murray examines racial and ethnic differences in self-representation and identification.
Drawing on two decades of studying gay life in North America, this tour de force of empirical documentation and social theory critically reviews what is known about the emergence, growth, and internal diversity of communities of openly gay men and lesbians. American Gay thus deepens our understanding of the ways individuals construct sexualities through working and living together.
Andy Warhol'S Blow Job
Roy Grundmann Temple University Press, 2003 Library of Congress PN1997.B6735G78 2003 | Dewey Decimal 791.4372
In this ground-breaking and provocative book, Roy Grundmann contends that Andy Warhol's notorious 1964 underground film, Blow Job, serves as rich allegory as well as suggestive metaphor for post-war American society's relation to homosexuality. Arguing that Blow Job epitomizes the highly complex position of gay invisibility and visibility, Grundmann uses the film to explore the mechanisms that constructed pre-Stonewall white gay male identity in popular culture, high art, science, and ethnography.
Grundmann draws on discourses of art history, film theory, queer studies, and cultural studies to situate Warhol's work at the nexus of Pop art, portrait painting, avant-garde film, and mainstream cinema. His close textual analysis of the film probes into its ambiguities and the ways in which viewers respond to what is and what is not on screen. Presenting rarely reproduced Warhol art and previously unpublished Ed Wallowitch photographs along with now iconic publicity shots of James Dean, Grundmann establishes Blow Job as a consummate example of Warhol's highly insightful engagement with a broad range of representational codes of gender and sexuality.
This interdisciplinary collection examines the shaping of local sexual cultures in the Asian Pacific region in order to move beyond definitions and understandings of sexuality that rely on Western assumptions. The diverse studies in AsiaPacifiQueer demonstrate convincingly that in the realm of sexualities, globalization results in creative and cultural admixture rather than a unilateral imposition of the western values and forms of sexual culture. These essays range across the Pacific Rim and encompass a variety of forms of social, cultural, and personal expression, examining sexuality through music, cinema, the media, shifts in popular rhetoric, comics and magazines, and historical studies. By investigating complex processes of localization, interregional borrowing, and hybridization, the contributors underscore the mutual transformation of gender and sexuality in both Asian Pacific and Western cultures.
Contributors are Ronald Baytan, J. Neil C. Garcia, Kam Yip Lo Lucetta, Song Hwee Lim, J. Darren Mackintosh, Claire Maree, Jin-Hyung Park, Teri Silvio, Megan Sinnott, Yik Koon Teh, Carmen Ka Man Tong, James Welker, Heather Worth, and Audrey Yue.
Some of the most divisive contests shaping the quest for marriage equality occurred not on the culture-war front lines but within the ranks of LGBTQ advocates. Nathaniel Frank tells the dramatic story of how an idea that once seemed unfathomable—and for many gays and lesbians undesirable—became a legal and moral right in just half a century.
Amos Badertscher Duke University Press, 1999 Library of Congress TR680.B24 1999 | Dewey Decimal 779.2092
Baltimore Portraits is a unique presentation of photographs by Amos Badertscher. These portraits—many accompanied by poignantly revealing, hand-written narratives about their subjects—represent a sector of Baltimore that has gone largely unnoticed and rarely has been documented. In this volume, the assemblage of images of bar and street people—transvestites, strippers, drug addicts, drag queens, and hustlers—spans a twenty-year period from the mid-1970s to the mid-1990s. Badertscher’s arresting and melancholy photographs document a culture that has virtually disappeared due to substance abuse, AIDS, and, often, societal or family neglect.
The photographer’s focus on content rather than on elaborate technique reveals the intensely personal—and, indeed, autobiographical—nature of his portraits. Their simplicity along with the text’s intimacy affects the viewer in ways not easily forgotten. An introduction by Tyler Curtain contextualizes the photographs both within the history of Baltimore and its queer subculture and in relationship to contemporaneous work by photographers Nan Goldin, Robert Mapplethorpe, Cindy Sherman, Duane Michaels, and others. Curtain also positions the underlying concerns of Bardertscher’s art in relation to gay and lesbian cultural politics.
This striking collection of portraits, along with the photographer’s moving text, will impact not only a general audience of photographers and enthusiasts of the art but also those engaged with gay and lesbian studies, queer theory, and cultural studies in general. It is published in association with the Duke University Museum of Art.
While over the past decade a number of scholars have done significant work on questions of black lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered identities, this volume is the first to collect this groundbreaking work and make black queer studies visible as a developing field of study in the United States. Bringing together essays by established and emergent scholars, this collection assesses the strengths and weaknesses of prior work on race and sexuality and highlights the theoretical and political issues at stake in the nascent field of black queer studies. Including work by scholars based in English, film studies, black studies, sociology, history, political science, legal studies, cultural studies, and performance studies, the volume showcases the broadly interdisciplinary nature of the black queer studies project.
The contributors consider representations of the black queer body, black queer literature, the pedagogical implications of black queer studies, and the ways that gender and sexuality have been glossed over in black studies and race and class marginalized in queer studies. Whether exploring the closet as a racially loaded metaphor, arguing for the inclusion of diaspora studies in black queer studies, considering how the black lesbian voice that was so expressive in the 1970s and 1980s is all but inaudible today, or investigating how the social sciences have solidified racial and sexual exclusionary practices, these insightful essays signal an important and necessary expansion of queer studies.
Contributors. Bryant K. Alexander, Devon Carbado, Faedra Chatard Carpenter, Keith Clark, Cathy Cohen, Roderick A. Ferguson, Jewelle Gomez, Phillip Brian Harper, Mae G. Henderson, Sharon P. Holland, E. Patrick Johnson, Kara Keeling, Dwight A. McBride, Charles I. Nero, Marlon B. Ross, Rinaldo Walcott, Maurice O. Wallace
First published in 1993, the award-winning Cherry Grove, Fire Island tells the story of the extraordinary gay and lesbian resort community near New York City. This new paperback edition includes a new preface by the author.
Chicago Whispers illuminates a colorful and vibrant record of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people who lived and loved in Chicago from the city’s beginnings in the 1670s as a fur-trading post to the end of the 1960s. Journalist St. Sukie de la Croix, drawing on years of archival research and personal interviews, reclaims Chicago’s LGBT past that had been forgotten, suppressed, or overlooked.
Included here are Jane Addams, the pioneer of American social work; blues legend Ma Rainey, who recorded “Sissy Blues” in Chicago in 1926; commercial artist J. C. Leyendecker, who used his lover as the model for “The Arrow Collar Man” advertisements; and celebrated playwright Lorraine Hansberry, author of A Raisin in the Sun. Here, too, are accounts of vice dens during the Civil War and classy gentlemen’s clubs; the wild and gaudy First Ward Ball that was held annually from 1896 to 1908; gender-crossing performers in cabarets and at carnival sideshows; rights activists like Henry Gerber in the 1920s; authors of lesbian pulp novels and publishers of “physique magazines”; and evidence of thousands of nameless queer Chicagoans who worked as artists and musicians, in the factories, offices, and shops, at theaters and in hotels. Chicago Whispers offers a diverse collection of alternately hip and heart-wrenching accounts that crackle with vitality.
In this pathbreaking history, Marc Stein takes an in-depth look at Philadelphia from the 1940s to the 1970s. What he finds is a city of vibrant gay and lesbian households, neighborhoods, commercial establishments, public cultures, and political groups. In doing so, Stein shatters the myth that lesbian and gay history began with the 1969 Stonewall riots in New York City and challenges the notion that only New York and San Francisco featured major lesbian and gay communities in the pre-Stonewall era.
Stein takes us on a tour through Philadelphia's bars, restaurants, bookstores, bathhouses, movie theaters, parks, and parades where lesbian and gay cultures thrived.
We learn about the scientific experts, religious leaders, public officials, and journalists who attacked and ignored same-sex sexualities. And we read about the courageous people who fought back with strategies of everyday resistance and organized political activism.
Stein argues against the idea that a conspiracy of silence surrounded gays and lesbians in the 1940s and 1950s. He shows that same-sex sexualities were regularly discussed in controversies concerning the tennis player Big Bill Tilden, the Walt Whitman Bridge, sex murders and crimes, and police raids. Philadelphians became national leaders in the gay and lesbian movement. They conducted sit-ins at Dewey's restaurant, organized pickets at Independence Hall, edited the movement's most widely circulated publications the Ladder and Drum, and pursued court cases all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Beautifully crafted and exceptionally well-written, Stein's book not only provides a new starting place for thinking about lesbian and gay history but also challenges readers to rethink twentieth-century urban history.
Coming Out, Moving Forward, the second volume in R. Richard Wagner’s groundbreaking work on gay history in Wisconsin, outlines the challenges that LGBT Wisconsinites faced in their efforts to right past oppressions and secure equality in the post-Stonewall period between 1969 and 2000. During this era, Wisconsin made history as the first state to enact a gay rights law prohibiting discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations on the basis of sexual orientation. It also became the first state to elect three openly gay/lesbian persons to Congress.
In this volume, R. Richard Wagner draws on historical research and materials from his extensive personal archive to not only chronicle an important movement, but also to tell the stories of the state’s LGBT pioneers—from legislators and elected officials to activists, businesspeople, and everyday citizens. Coming Out, Moving Forward documents the rich history of Wisconsin’s LGBT individuals and communities as they pushed back against injustice and found ways to live openly and proudly as themselves.
Coming Out, Moving Forward is a continuation to the first volume in this series, We’ve Been Here All Along.
Telling the affecting stories of eighty gay, bisexual, and transgender (GBT) Latino activists and volunteers living in Chicago and San Francisco, Compañeros: Latino Activists in the Face of AIDS closely details how these individuals have been touched or transformed by the AIDS epidemic. Weaving together activists' responses to oppression and stigma, their encounters with AIDS, and their experiences as GBTs and Latinos in North America and Latin America, Jesus Ramirez-Valles explores the intersection of civic involvement with ethnic and sexual identity. Even as activists battle multiple sources of oppression, they are able to restore their sense of family connection and self-esteem through the creation of an alternative space in which community members find value in their relationships with one another. In demonstrating the transformative effects of a nurturing community environment for GBT Latinos affected by the AIDS epidemic, Ramirez-Valles illustrates that members find support in one another, as compañeros, in their struggles with homophobia, gender discrimination, racism, poverty, and forced migration.
When the Supreme Court struck down Colorado's Amendment 2—which would have nullified all state and local laws protecting gays and lesbians from discrimination—it was widely regarded as a victory for gay rights. Yet many gays and lesbians still risk losing their jobs, custody of their children, and even their liberty under the law. Using the Colorado initiative as his focus, Gerstmann untangles the complex standards and subtle rhetoric the Supreme Court uses to apply the equal protection clause.
The Court divides people into legal classes that receive varying levels of protection; gays and lesbians and other groups, such as the elderly and the poor, receive the least. Gerstmann reveals how these standards are used to favor certain groups over others, and also how Amendment 2 advocates used the Court's doctrine to convince voters that gays and lesbians were seeking "special rights" in Colorado.
Concluding with a call for wholesale reform of equal-protection jurisprudence, this book is essential reading for anyone interested in fair, coherent, and truly equal protection under the law.
Whether one thinks homosexuals are born or made, they generally are not born into gay families, nor are they socialized to be gay by their peers or schools. How then do people become aware of homosexuality and, in some cases, integrate into gay communities? The making of homosexual identity is the result of a communicative process that entails searching, listening, looking, reading, and finding. Contacts Desired proposes that this communicative process has a history, and it sets out to tell that story.
Martin Meeker here argues that over the course of the twentieth century, a series of important innovations occurred in the networks that linked individuals to a larger social knowledge of homosexuality. He points to three key innovations in particular: the emergence of the homophile movement in the 1950s; the mass media treatments of homosexuals in the late 1950s and early 1960s; and the popularization of do-it-yourself publishing from the late 1940s to the 1970s, which offered bar guides, handmade magazines, and other materials that gay men and lesbians could use to seek one another out. In the process, Meeker unearths a treasure trove of archival materials that reveals how homosexuals played a crucial role in transforming the very structure of communications and urban communities since the postwar era.
"Contacts Desired is a valuable and enduring work of scholarship, surely the best book in gay and lesbian history this year."--Gay and Lesbian Review
When state voters passed the California Marriage Protection Act (Proposition 8) in 2008, it restricted the definition of marriage to a legal union between a man and a woman. The act's passage further agitated an already roiling national debate about whether American notions of family could or should expand to include, for example, same-sex marriage, unmarried cohabitation, and gay adoption. But how do Americans really define family? The first study to explore this largely overlooked question, Counted Out examines currents in public opinion to assess their policy implications and predict how Americans' definitions of family may change in the future. Counted Out broadens the scope of previous studies by moving beyond efforts to understand how Americans view their own families to examine the way Americans characterize the concept of family in general. The book reports on and analyzes the results of the authors' Constructing the Family Surveys (2003 and 2006), which asked more than 1,500 people to explain their stances on a broad range of issues, including gay marriage and adoption, single parenthood, the influence of biological and social factors in child development, religious ideology, and the legal rights of unmarried partners. Not surprisingly, the authors find that the standard bearer for public conceptions of family continues to be a married, heterosexual couple with children. More than half of Americans also consider same-sex couples with children as family, and from 2003 to 2006 the percentages of those who believe so increased significantly—up 6 percent for lesbian couples and 5 percent for gay couples. The presence of children in any living arrangement meets with a notable degree of public approval. Less than 30 percent of Americans view heterosexual cohabitating couples without children as family, while similar couples with children count as family for nearly 80 percent. Counted Out shows that for most Americans, however, the boundaries around what they define as family are becoming more malleable with time. Counted Out demonstrates that American definitions of family are becoming more expansive. Who counts as family has far-reaching implications for policy, including health insurance coverage, end-of-life decisions, estate rights, and child custody. Public opinion matters. As lawmakers consider the future of family policy, they will want to consider the evolution in American opinion represented in this groundbreaking book. A Volume in the American Sociological Association's Rose Series in Sociology
Based on over six years of fieldwork, Sandra L. Faiman-Silva's The Courage to Connect traces the transformation of the Cape Cod community of Provincetown from its nineteenth-century origins as a fishing town where Portuguese immigrants settled to its present status as a welcoming, sexually diverse tourist enclave. Faiman-Silva examines the community’s history and economy as well as how gay and straight cultures intersect in areas such as public education, local government, and law enforcement. Using queer and critical culture theory to deconstruct day-to-day local encounters, Faiman-Silva describes the causes of social conflicts and how these conflicts can be resolved. Capturing the pathos and joy of a community that has struggled to accommodate radical social changes, The Courage to Connect yields understanding of the ways in which communities can construct themselves to overcome differences.
In postapartheid Cape Town—Africa's gay capital—many Pentecostal men turned to "ex-gay" ministries in hopes of “curing” their homosexuality in order to conform to conservative Christian values and African social norms. In Desire Work Melissa Hackman traces the experiences of predominantly white ex-gay men as they attempt to forge a heterosexual masculinity and enter into heterosexual marriage through emotional, bodily, and religious work. These men subjected themselves to daily self-surveillance and followed prescribed behaviors such as changing how they talked and walked. Ex-gay men also saw themselves as participating in the redemption of the nation, because South African society was perceived as suffering from a crisis of masculinity in which the country lacked enough moral heterosexual men. By tying the experience of ex-gay men to the convergence of social movements and public debates surrounding race, violence, religion, and masculinity in South Africa, Hackman offers insights into the construction of personal identities in the context of sexuality and spirituality.
With this book, Leila J. Rupp accomplishes what few scholars have even attempted: she combines a vast array of scholarship on supposedly discrete episodes in American history into an entertaining and entirely readable story of same-sex desire across the country and the centuries.
"Most extraordinary about Leila J. Rupp's indeed short, two-hundred-page history of 'same-sex love and sexuality' is not that it manages to account for such a variety of individuals, races, and classes or take in such a broad chronological and thematic range, but rather that it does all this with such verve, lucidity, and analytical rigor. . . . [A]n elegant, inspiring survey." —John Howard, Journal of American History
The Devil's Wall
Mark Cornwall Harvard University Press, 2012 Library of Congress DB2500.S94C67 2012 | Dewey Decimal 943.71
Heinz Rutha, pioneer of a youth movement that emphasized male bonding in its quest to reassert German dominance over Czechoslovakia, was arrested in 1937 for corrupting male adolescents. This led to an international scandal. Cornwall’s biography is the first to tackle the long-taboo intersection of youth, homosexuality, and fascist nationalism.
Disruptive Situations challenges representations of contemporary Beirut as an exceptional space for LGBTQ people by highlighting everyday life in a city where violence is the norm. Ghassan Moussawi, a Beirut native, seeks to uncover the underlying processes of what he calls “fractal orientalism,” a relational understanding of modernity and cosmopolitanism that illustrates how transnational discourses of national and sexual exceptionalism operate on multiple scales in the Arab world.
Moussawi’s intrepid ethnography features the voices of women, gay men and genderqueers in Beirut to examine how queer individuals negotiate life in this uncertain region. He examines “al-wad’,” or “the situation,” to understand the practices that form these strategies and to raise questions about queer-friendly spaces in and beyond Beirut.
Disruptive Situations alsoshows how LGBTQ Beirutis resist reconciliation narratives and position their identities and visibility at different times as ways of simultaneously managing their multiple positionalities and al-wad’. Moussawi argues that the daily survival strategies in Beirut are queer—and not only enacted by LGBTQ people—since Beirutis are living amidst an already queer situation of ongoing precarity.
Marching on Washington is a hallowed tradition of American political protest, and demonstrations led by the women’s rights, civil rights, and antiwar movements all endure in popular memory. Between 1979 and 2000 four major lesbian and gay demonstrations took place there, and while these marches were some of the largest of their time, they have been sorely overlooked—until now. Drawing on extensive archival research, historical data, original photographs, interviews with key activists, and more than a thousand news articles, The Dividends of Dissent offers a thorough analysis—descriptive, historical, and sociological—of these marches and their organization.
Amin Ghaziani ably puts these demonstrations into their cultural context, chronicling gay and lesbian life at the time and the political currents that prompted the protests. He then turns to each march in detail, focusing on the role that internal dissent played in its organization. Ultimately, Ghaziani concludes that infighting can contribute positively to the development of social movements, and that the debates over the marches helped define what it means to be gay in the United States.
In Erotic Islands, Lyndon K. Gill maps a long queer presence at a crossroads of the Caribbean. This transdisciplinary book foregrounds the queer histories of Carnival, calypso, and HIV/AIDS in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. At its heart is an extension of Audre Lorde's use of the erotic as theory and methodology. Gill turns to lesbian/gay artistry and activism to insist on eros as an intertwined political-sensual-spiritual lens through which to see self and society more clearly. This analysis juxtaposes revered musician Calypso Rose, renowned mas man Peter Minshall, and resilient HIV/AIDS organization Friends For Life. Erotic Islands traverses black studies, queer studies, and anthropology toward an emergent black queer diaspora studies.
A surprising and vivid remembrance of gay life in the wake of World War II.
For many, it is often difficult to imagine gay gathering places in the decades before the Stonewall riots of the 1960s, and nearly impossible to think of such communities outside the nation's largest cities. Yet such places did exist, and their histories tell amazing stories of survival and the struggle for acceptance and self-respect. When Ricardo J. Brown died in 1999, he left a compelling memoir of his youth and experiences as a young gay man in St. Paul. After being discharged from the navy for revealing his sexual orientation to a commanding officer in 1945, Brown returned to his hometown with a new self-awareness and a desire to find a group of people like himself. He discovered such a place in Kirmser's.
A small neighborhood bar owned by a German immigrant couple in St. Paul's downtown, Kirmser's served working-class customers during daylight hours, but became an unofficial home to the gay men and lesbians who gathered there nightly in the years following World War II. The Evening Crowd at Kirmser's introduces us to often humorous but frequently tragic stories of those who would become the author's friends: Flaming Youth, a homely, sardonic man who carried the nickname from his younger years ironically into middle age; Bud York, the "All-American Boy," who seduced all with his wholesome good looks and confidence; Dickie Grant, a likable, gentle boy who is arrested for writing bad checks and is murdered while in prison; and Dale, the author's best friend, who suddenly loses his job of six years after an anonymous note informed his employer that he is gay.
A revealing look at the origins of gay culture in a mid-sized city and among working-class people, The Evening Crowd at Kirmser's is destined to become a rare and unique classic.
"This posthumous memoir is by a GI who, after being discharged from the navy for his homosexuality in the 1940s, returned to his hometown, St. Paul, Minnesota, where he became part of the community centered on a gay bar." --Washington Post Book World
"Brown colorfully if sparingly depicts the claustrophobic atmosphere of one seedy, ill-kept workingman's bar, heterosexual by day and gay by night. Kirmser's itself is the major character in this lively, intimate book." --Gay & Lesbian Review
"Here is a look at a St. Paul that has seldom been documented, and at a moment in gay history that is usually shrouded in silence. Those who experienced the history had so much to lose if they were exposed." --City Pages
"A fascinating and engaging memoir of post-WWII, pre-Stonewall gay life. Remarkable because of its compactness, its commitment to detail, and its attention to the emotions of people living in a sexual police state." --Rain Taxi Review of Books
"The Evening Crowd at Kirmser's is a reminder of how life was in the bad old days; and warning that we must do all we can to keep them from coming back." --The Weekly News
"Whimsical, insightful, and compellingly readable, Ricardo Brown's memoir offers a remarkable portrait of the life gay men built for themselves after the Second World War in small cities far from the coastal meccas of gay life. A fascinating portrait of working class gay male life in the postwar period."
--George Chauncey, author of Gay New York
A lifelong journalist, Ricardo J. Brown (1927-1999) was born in Stillwater, Minnesota. During his long career, he worked as a court reporter for the Alabama Journal, court reporter and sports editor for the Fairbanks Daily News Mirror of Alaska, and as the Minneapolis bureau chief for Fairchild Publications.
William Reichard is a poet and fiction writer, and author of An Alchemy in the Bones (1999).
Herbert Daniel was a significant and complex figure in Brazilian leftist revolutionary politics and social activism from the mid-1960s until his death in 1992. As a medical student, he joined a revolutionary guerrilla organization but was forced to conceal his sexual identity from his comrades, a situation Daniel described as internal exile. After a government crackdown, he spent much of the 1970s in Europe, where his political self-education continued. He returned to Brazil in 1981, becoming engaged in electoral politics and social activism to champion gay rights, feminism, and environmental justice, achieving global recognition for fighting discrimination against those with HIV/AIDS. In Exile within Exiles, James N. Green paints a full and dynamic portrait of Daniel's deep commitment to leftist politics, using Daniel's personal and political experiences to investigate the opposition to Brazil's military dictatorship, the left's construction of a revolutionary masculinity, and the challenge that the transition to democracy posed to radical movements. Green positions Daniel as a vital bridge linking former revolutionaries to the new social movements, engendering productive dialogue between divergent perspectives in his writings and activism.
Unlike many social movements, the gay and lesbian struggle for visibility and rights has succeeded in combining a unified group identity with the celebration of individual differences. Forging Gay Identities explores how this happened, tracing the evolution of gay life and organizations in San Francisco from the 1950s to the mid-1990s.
What is it like to “feel historical”? In Foundlings Christopher Nealon analyzes texts produced by American gay men and lesbians in the first half of the twentieth century—poems by Hart Crane, novels by Willa Cather, gay male physique magazines, and lesbian pulp fiction. Nealon brings these diverse works together by highlighting a coming-of-age narrative he calls “foundling”—a term for queer disaffiliation from and desire for family, nation, and history. The young runaways in Cather’s novels, the way critics conflated Crane’s homosexual body with his verse, the suggestive poses and utopian captions of muscle magazines, and Beebo Brinker, the aging butch heroine from Ann Bannon’s pulp novels—all embody for Nealon the uncertain space between two models of lesbian and gay sexuality. The “inversion” model dominant in the first half of the century held that homosexuals are souls of one gender trapped in the body of another, while the more contemporary “ethnic” model refers to the existence of a distinct and collective culture among gay men and lesbians. Nealon’s unique readings, however, reveal a constant movement between these two discursive poles, and not, as is widely theorized, a linear progress from one to the other. This startlingly original study will interest those working on gay and lesbian studies, American literature and culture, and twentieth-century history.
During the 1970s in the United States, hundreds of feminist, queer, and antiracist activists were imprisoned or became fugitives as they fought the changing contours of U.S. imperialism, global capitalism, and a repressive racial state. In Fugitive Life Stephen Dillon examines these activists' communiqués, films, memoirs, prison writing, and poetry to highlight the centrality of gender and sexuality to a mode of racialized power called the neoliberal-carceral state. Drawing on writings by Angela Davis, the George Jackson Brigade, Assata Shakur, the Weather Underground, and others, Dillon shows how these activists were among the first to theorize and make visible the links between conservative "law and order" rhetoric, free market ideology, incarceration, sexism, and the continued legacies of slavery. Dillon theorizes these prisoners and fugitives as queer figures who occupied a unique position from which to highlight how neoliberalism depended upon racialized mass incarceration. In so doing, he articulates a vision of fugitive freedom in which the work of these activists becomes foundational to undoing the reign of the neoliberal-carceral state.
In the first anthology to survey the full range of gay men’s autobiographical writing from Walt Whitman to the present, Gay American Autobiography draws excerpts from letters, journals, oral histories, memoirs, and autobiographies to provide examples of the best life writing over the last century and a half.
Volume editor David Bergman guides the reader chronologically through selected writings that give voice to every generation of gay writers since the nineteenth century, including a diverse array of American men of African, European, Jewish, Asian, and Latino heritage. Documenting a range of life experiences that encompass tattoo artists and academics, composers and drag queens, hustlers and clerks, it contains accounts of turn-of-the-century transvestites, gay rights activists, men battling AIDS, and soldiers attempting to come out in the army. Each selection provides important insight on the wide spectrum of ways gay men have defined and lived their lives, highlighting how self-awareness changes an author’s experience.
The volume includes an introduction by Bergman and headnotes for each of the nearly forty entries. Bringing many out-of-print and hard-to-find works to new readers, this challenging and comprehensive anthology chronicles American gay history and life struggles over the course of the past 150 years.
Finalist, Lambda Book Award for LGBT Anthology, Lambda Literary Foundation
Gay Latino Studies: A Critical Reader
Michael Hames-García and Ernesto Javier Martínez, eds. Duke University Press, 2011 Library of Congress HQ76.3.U5G384 2011 | Dewey Decimal 306.766208968073
The authors of the essays in this unique collection explore the lives and cultural contributions of gay Latino men in the United States, while also analyzing the political and theoretical stakes of gay Latino studies. In new essays and influential previously published pieces, Latino scholars based in American studies, ethnic studies, history, performance studies, and sociology consider gay Latino scholarly and cultural work in relation to mainstream gay, lesbian, and queer academic discourses and the broader field of Chicano and Latino studies. They also critique cultural explanations of gay Latino sexual identity and behavior, examine artistic representations of queer Latinidad, and celebrate the place of dance in gay Latino culture. Designed to stimulate dialogue, the collection pairs each essay with a critical response by a prominent Latino/a or Chicana/o scholar. Terms such as gay, identity, queer, and visibility are contested throughout the volume; the significance of these debates is often brought to the fore in the commentaries. The essays in Gay Latino Studies complement and overlap with the groundbreaking work of lesbians of color and critical race theorists, as well as queer theorists and gay and lesbian studies scholars. Taken together, they offer much-needed insight into the lives and perspectives of gay, bisexual, and queer Latinos, and they renew attention to the politics of identity and coalition.
Contributors. Tomás Almaguer, Luz Calvo, Lionel Cantú,, Daniel Contreras, Catriona Rueda Esquibel, Ramón García, Ramón A. Gutiérrez, Michael Hames-García, Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes, María Lugones, Ernesto J. Martínez, Paula M. L. Moya, José Esteban Muñoz, Frances Negrón-Muntaner, Ricardo L. Ortiz, Daniel Enrique Pérez, Ramón H. Rivera-Servera, Richard T. Rodríguez, David Román, Horacio N. Roque Ramírez, Antonio Viego
In his autobiography, John Addington Symonds relates a glorious night of passion, in which he and his lover "lay covered from the cold in bed, tasting the honey of softly spoken words and the blossoms of lips pressed on lips." Christopher Isherwood's first autobiography, on the other hand, was far less direct; he wrote a second autobiography in part because the first was "not truly autobiographical" in that "the author conceals important facts about himself." These contradictions, evasions, and explicit sexual details of the life stories of fourteen men form Gay Lives, a revealing account of homosexual autobiography.
Paul Robinson reads the memoirs of French, British, and American gay authors—André Gide, Quentin Crisp, and Martin Duberman, among others—through the prism of sexual identity, asking fascinating questions about homosexuality and its relation to literary form. How did these authors discover their sexual identity? Did they embrace it or reject it? How did they express often conflicted desires in their words, which ranged from defiant and brutally frank to ambiguous and abstract? Robinson considers the choices each made—as a man and an author—to accommodate himself to society's homophobia or live in protest against his oppression.
Despite the threads that connect these stories, Gay Lives refutes the notion that there is a typical homosexual "career" by showing that gay men have led wildly dissimilar lives—from the exuberant to the miserable—and that they have found no less dissimilar meanings in those lives.
Libby Adler offers a comprehensive critique of the mainstream LGBT legal agenda in the United States, showing how LGBT equal rights discourse drives legal advocates toward a narrow array of reform objectives that do little to help the lives of the most marginalized members of the LGBT community.
The gay rights question is whether the second-class legal status of gay people should be changed. In this book Andrew Koppelman shows the powerful legal and moral case for gay equality, but argues that courts cannot and should not impose it.
The Gay Rights Question in Contemporary American Law offers an unusually nuanced analysis of the most pressing gay rights issues. Does antigay discrimination violate the Constitution? Is there any sound moral objection to homosexual conduct? Are such objections the moral and constitutional equivalent of racism? Must state laws recognizing same-sex unions be given effect in other states? Should courts take account of popular resistance to gay equality? Koppelman sheds new light on all these questions. Sure to upset purists on either side of the debate, Koppelman's book criticizes the legal arguments advanced both for and against gay rights. Just as important, it places these arguments in broader moral and social contexts, offering original, pragmatic, and workable legal solutions.
Edited by David M. Halperin and Valerie Traub University of Chicago Press, 2009 Library of Congress HQ75.15.G53 2009 | Dewey Decimal 306.766
Ever since the 1969 Stonewall Riots, “gay pride” has been the rallying cry of the gay rights movement and the political force behind the emergence of the field of lesbian and gay studies. But has something been lost, forgotten, or buried beneath the drive to transform homosexuality from a perversion to a proud social identity? Have the political requirements of gay pride repressed discussion of the more uncomfortable or undignified aspects of homosexuality?
Gay Shame seeks to lift this unofficial ban on the investigation of homosexuality and shame by presenting critical work from the most vibrant frontier in contemporary queer studies. An esteemed list of contributors tackles a range of issues—questions of emotion, disreputable sexual histories, dissident gender identities, and embarrassing figures and moments in gay history—as they explore the possibility of reclaiming shame as a new, even productive, way to examine lesbian and gay culture.
Accompanied by a DVD collection of films, performances, and archival imagery, Gay Shame constitutes nothing less than a major redefinition and revitalization of the field.
William N. ESKRIDGE Harvard University Press, 1999 Library of Congress KF4754.5.E84 1999 | Dewey Decimal 342.73087
This book provides a comprehensive analysis of the legal issues concerning gender and sexual nonconformity in the United States. Part One, which covers the years from the post-Civil War period to the 1980s, is a history of state efforts to discipline and punish the behavior of homosexuals and other people considered to be deviant. During this period such people could get by only at the cost of suppressing their most basic feelings and emotions. Part Two addresses contemporary issues. Although it is no longer illegal to be openly gay in America, homosexuals still suffer from state discrimination in the military and in other realms, and private discrimination and violence against gays is prevalent. William Eskridge presents a rigorously argued case for the "sexualization" of the First Amendment, showing why, for example, same-sex ceremonies and intimacy should be considered "expressive conduct" deserving the protection of the courts. The author draws on legal reasoning, sociological studies, and history to develop an effective response to the arguments made in defense of the military ban. The concluding part of the book locates the author's legal arguments within the larger currents of liberal theory and integrates them into a general stance toward freedom, gender equality, and religious pluralism.
The U.S.-Mexico border is frequently presented by contemporary media as a violent and dangerous place. But that is not a new perception. For decades the border has been constructed as a topographic metaphor for all forms of illegality, in which an ineffable link between space and violence is somehow assumed. The sociological and cultural implications of violence have recently emerged at the forefront of academic discussions about the border. And yet few studies have been devoted to one of its most disturbing manifestations: gender violence. This book analyzes this pervasive phenomenon, including the femicides in Ciudad Juárez that have come to exemplify, at least for the media, its most extreme manifestation.
Contributors to this volume propose that the study of gender-motivated violence requires interpretive and analytical strategies that draw on methods reaching across the divide between the social sciences and the humanities. Through such an interdisciplinary conversation, the book examines how such violence is (re)presented in oral narratives, newspaper reports, films and documentaries, novels, TV series, and legal discourse. It also examines the role that the media have played in this process, as well as the legal initiatives that might address this pressing social problem.
Together these essays offer a new perspective on the implications of, and connections between, gendered forms of violence and topics such as mechanisms of social violence, the micro-social effects of economic models, the asymmetries of power in local, national, and transnational configurations, and the particular rhetoric, aesthetics, and ethics of discourses that represent violence.
Genealogy Of Queer Theory
William Turner Temple University Press, 2000 Library of Congress HQ76.25.T775 2000 | Dewey Decimal 306.76601
Who are queers and what do they want? Could it be that we are all queers? Beginning with such questions, William B. Turner's lucid and engaging book traces the roots of queer theory to the growing awareness that few of us precisely fit standard categories for sexual and gender identity.
Turner shows how Michal Foucault's work contributed to feminists' investigations into the ways that power relates to identity. In the last decades of the twentieth century, feminists were the first to challenge the assumption that a claim to universal identity -- the white male citizen -- should serve as the foundation of political thought and action. Difference matters. Race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality interact, producing a wide array of identities that resist rigid definition and are mutable. By understanding the notion of transhistorical categories -- woman, man, homosexual, and so forth -- feminist and gay male scholars launched queer theoretical work as a new way to think about the politics of gender and sexuality.
A Geneology of Queer Theory probes the fierce debates among scholars and activists, weighing the charges that queer readings of texts and identity politics do not constitute and might inhibit radical social change. Written by a historian, it considers the implications of queer theory for historical inquiry and the distinction between philosophy and history. As such, the book will interest readers of gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender studies, intellectual history, political theory, and the history of gender/sexuality.
Honorable Mention by the David Easton Award Committee
APSA Finalist for the 2009 Herskovits Award for outstanding scholarly work published on Africa
Heterosexual Africa? The History of an Idea from the Age of Exploration to the Age of AIDS builds from Marc Epprecht’s previous book, Hungochani (which focuses expli citly on same-sex desire in southern Africa) to explore the historical processes by which a singular, heterosexual identity for Africa was constructed—by anthropologists, ethnopsychologists, colonial officials, African elites, and most recently, health care workers seeking to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic. This is an eloquently written, accessible book, based on a rich and diverse range of sources, that will find enthusiastic audiences in classrooms and in the general public.
Epprecht argues that Africans, just like people all over the world, have always had a range of sexualities and sexual identities. Over the course of the last two centuries, however, African societies south of the Sahara have come to be viewed as singularly heterosexual. Epprecht carefully traces the many routes by which this singularity, this heteronormativity, became a dominant culture. A fascinating story that will surely generate lively debate Epprecht makes his project speak to a range of literatures—queer theory, the new imperial history, African social history, queer and women’s studies, and biomedical literature on the HIV/AIDS pandemic. He does this with a light enough hand that his story is not bogged down by endless references to particular debates.
Heterosexual Africa? aims to understand an enduring stereotype about Africa and Africans. It asks how Africa came to be defined as a “homosexual-free zone” during the colonial era, and how this idea not only survived the transition to independence but flourished under conditions of globalization and early panicky responses to HIV/AIDS.
The first full-length study of same-sex love in any period of Russian or Soviet history, Homosexual Desire in Revolutionary Russia investigates the private worlds of sexual dissidents during the pivotal decades before and after the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution. Using records and archives available to researchers only since the fall of Communism, Dan Healey revisits the rich homosexual subcultures of St. Petersburg and Moscow, illustrating the ambiguous attitude of the late Tsarist regime and revolutionary rulers toward gay men and lesbians. Homosexual Desire in Revolutionary Russia reveals a world of ordinary Russians who lived extraordinary lives and records the voices of a long-silenced minority.
We like to think of ourselves as possessing an essential self, a core identity that is who we really are, regardless of where we live, work, or play. But places actually make us much more than we might think, argues Japonica Brown-Saracino in this novel ethnographic study of lesbian, bisexual, and queer individuals in four small cities across the United States.
Taking us into communities in Ithaca, New York; San Luis Obispo, California; Greenfield, Massachusetts; and Portland, Maine; Brown-Saracino shows how LBQ migrants craft a unique sense of self that corresponds to their new homes. How Places Make Us demonstrates that sexual identities are responsive to city ecology. Despite the fact that the LBQ residents share many demographic and cultural traits, their approaches to sexual identity politics and to ties with other LBQ individuals and heterosexual residents vary markedly by where they live. Subtly distinct local ecologies shape what it feels like to be a sexual minority, including the degree to which one feels accepted, how many other LBQ individuals one encounters in daily life, and how often a city declares its embrace of difference. In short, city ecology shapes how one “does” LBQ in a specific place. Ultimately, Brown-Saracino shows that there isn’t one general way of approaching sexual identity because humans are not only social but fundamentally local creatures. Even in a globalized world, the most personal of questions—who am I?—is in fact answered collectively by the city in which we live.
How should we chart a course toward legal recognition of gay rights as basic human rights? In this enlightening study, legal scholar David Richards explores the connections between gay rights and three successful civil rights movements—black civil rights, feminism, and religious toleration—to determine how these might serve as analogies for the gay rights movement.
Richards argues that racial and gender struggles are informative but partial models. As in these movements, achieving gay rights requires eliminating unjust stereotypes and allowing one's identity to develop free from intolerant views. Richards stresses, however, that gay identity is an ethical choice based on gender equality. Thus the right to religious freedom offers the most compelling analogy for a gay rights movement because gay identity should be protected legally as an ethical decision of conscience.
A thoughtful and highly original voice in the struggle for gay rights, David Richards is the first to argue that discrimination is like religious intolerance-denial of full humanity to individuals because of their identity and moral commitments to gender equality.
Movements for social change are by their nature oppositional, as are those who join change movements. How people negotiate identity within social movements is one of the central concerns in the field.
This volume offers new scholarship that explores issues of diversity and uniformity among social movement participants. Featuring case studies that range widely—from Jewish resistance fighters in Nazi-occupied Poland to antigay Christian movements in the United States to online white supremacy groups—the essays show how participants set aside issues of personal identity in order to merge together and how these processes affect mobilization and the attainment of goals.
Contributors: Mary Bernstein, Kimberly B. Dugan, Elizabeth Kaminski, Susan Munkres, Kevin Neuhouser, Benita Roth, Silke Roth, Todd Schroer, Verta Taylor, Jane Ward.
The AIDS epidemic soured the memory of the sexual revolution and gay liberation of the 1970s, and prominent politicians, commentators, and academics instructed gay men to forget the sexual cultures of the 1970s in order to ensure a healthy future. But without memory there can be no future, argue Christopher Castiglia and Christopher Reed in this exploration of the struggle over gay memory that marked the decades following the onset of AIDS.
Challenging many of the assumptions behind first-wave queer theory, If Memory Serves offers a new perspective on the emergence of contemporary queer culture from the suppression and repression of gay memory. Drawing on a rich archive of videos, films, television shows, novels, monuments, paintings, and sculptures created in the wake of the epidemic, the authors reveal a resistance among critics to valuing—even recognizing—the inscription of gay memory in art, literature, popular culture, and the built environment. Castiglia and Reed explore such topics as the unacknowledged ways in which the popular sitcom Will and Grace circulated gay subcultural references to awaken a desire for belonging among young viewers; the post-traumatic (un)rememberings of queer theory; and the generation of “ideality politics” in the art of Félix González-Torres, the film Chuck & Buck, and the independent video Video Remains.
Inspired by Alasdair MacIntyre’s insight that “the possession of a historical identity and the possession of a social identity coincide,” Castiglia and Reed demonstrate that memory is crafted in response to inadequacies in the present—and therefore a constructive relation to the past is essential to the imagining of a new future.
For gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people in the United States, the twenty-first century has brought dramatic changes: the end of sodomy laws, the elimination of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” a move toward recognition of same-sex marriage, Gay-Straight Alliances in thousands of high schools, and an explosion of visibility in the media and popular culture. All of this would have been unimaginable to those living just a few decades ago. Yet, at the same time, the American political system has grown ever more conservative, and increasing economic inequality has been a defining feature of the new century.
A pioneering scholar of gay history, John D’Emilio reflects in this wide-ranging collection of essays upon the social, cultural, and political changes provoked by LGBT activism. He offers provocative questions and historical analyses: What can we learn from a life-long activist like Bayard Rustin, who questioned the wisdom of “identity politics”? Was Richard Nixon a “gay liberationist”? How can knowing local stories—like those of Chicago in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s—help build stronger communities and enrich traditions of activism? Might the focus on achieving actually be evidence of growing conservatism in LGBT communities? In a New Century provides a dynamic, thoughtful, and important resource for identifying changes that have occurred in the United States since 1960, taking stock of the work that still needs to be done, and issuing an urgent call to action for getting there.
Best Books for General Audiences, selected by the American Association of School Librarians
Best Special Interest Books, selected by the Public Library Reviewers
A bestseller in France following its publication in 1999, Insult and the Making of the Gay Self is an extraordinary set of reflections on “the gay question” by Didier Eribon, one of France’s foremost public intellectuals. Known internationally as the author of a pathbreaking biography of Michel Foucault, Eribon is a leading voice in French gay studies. In explorations of gay subjectivity as it is lived now and as it has been expressed in literary history and in the life and work of Foucault, Eribon argues that gay male politics, social life, and culture are transformative responses to an oppressive social order. Bringing together the work of Jean-Paul Sartre, Pierre Bourdieu, Judith Butler, and Erving Goffman, he contends that gay culture and political movements flow from the need to overcome a world of insult in the process of creating gay selves.
Eribon describes the emergence of homosexual literature in Britain and France at the turn of the last century and traces this new gay discourse from Oscar Wilde and the literary circles of late-Victorian Oxford to André Gide and Marcel Proust. He asserts that Foucault should be placed in a long line of authors—including Wilde, Gide, and Proust—who from the nineteenth century onward have tried to create spaces in which to resist subjection and reformulate oneself. Drawing on his unrivaled knowledge of Foucault’s oeuvre, Eribon presents a masterful new interpretation of Foucault. He calls attention to a particular passage from Madness and Civilization that has never been translated into English. Written some fifteen years before The History of Sexuality, this passage seems to contradict Foucault’s famous idea that homosexuality was a late-nineteenth-century construction. Including an argument for the use of Hannah Arendt’s thought in gay rights advocacy, Insult and the Making of the Gay Self is an impassioned call for critical, active engagement with the question of how gay life is shaped both from without and within.
Finalist, Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry
Finalist, Publishing Triangle's Thom Gunn Award
In this affecting poetry debut, Charif Shanahan explores what it means to be fully human in our wounded and divided world. In poised yet unrelenting lyric poems, Shanahan—queer and mixed-race—confronts the challenges of a complex cultural inheritance, informed by colonialism and his mother’s immigration to the United States from Morocco, navigating racial constructs, sexuality, family, and the globe in search of “who we are to each other . . . who we are to ourselves.”
With poems that weave from Marrakesh to Zürich to London, through history to the present day, this book is, on its surface, an uncompromising exploration of identity in personal and collective terms. Yet the collection is, most deeply, about intimacy and love, the inevitability of human separation and the challenge of human connection. Urging us to reexamine our own place in the broader human tapestry, Into Each Room We Enter without Knowing announces the arrival of a powerful and necessary new voice.
Laboring For Rights
edited by Gerald Hunt Temple University Press, 1999 Library of Congress HD6285.L33 1999 | Dewey Decimal 331.53
How do unions around the world respond to issues raised by sexual minorities? Much as been written on labor's response to issues raised by women and racial minorities, but there has been little work done on labor's engagement with gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and the transgendered. The original essays in this collection attempt to fill that void by bringing together a group of experts who examine labor's response to such issues as benefits for same-sex partners, anti-discrimination language in collective agreements, and education. Speaking from a variety of racial backgrounds, sexual orientations, and political views, the contributors bring their unique personal perspectives and scholarly approaches to this groundbreaking book.
The chapters included in Laboring for Rights give a global vision to the increasingly important subject of equity in the workplace. They offer a much-needed look at labor's involvement with current international workplace conditions from such diverse countries as the United States, Canada, Australia, Germany, Britain, France, the Netherlands, and South Africa, as well as parts of the South Pacific. Some of these countries have strong and progressive labor unions; some, like the U.S., have relatively weak labor organizations. But whatever the context, as these articles demonstrate, there seems to be a growing and in some instances prospering gay/lesbian labor alliance in many parts of the world.
Laboring for Rights is a pioneering text in an important new area of labor study. It will engage readers interested in equality in the workplace, labor and organizational studies, gay and lesbian activism, and international, comparative studies.
Language and Sexuality explores the question of how linguistic practices and ideologies relate to sexuality and sexual identity, opening with a discussion of the emerging field of "queer linguistics" and moving from theory into practice with case studies of language use in a wide variety of cultural settings. The resulting volume combines the perspectives of the field's top scholars with exciting new research to present new ideas on the ways in which language use intersects with sexual identity.
The McCarthy era is generally considered the worst period of political repression in recent American history. But while the famous question, "Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?" resonated in the halls of Congress, security officials were posing another question at least as frequently, if more discreetly: "Information has come to the attention of the Civil Service Commission that you are a homosexual. What comment do you care to make?"
Historian David K. Johnson here relates the frightening, untold story of how, during the Cold War, homosexuals were considered as dangerous a threat to national security as Communists. Charges that the Roosevelt and Truman administrations were havens for homosexuals proved a potent political weapon, sparking a "Lavender Scare" more vehement and long-lasting than McCarthy's Red Scare. Relying on newly declassified documents, years of research in the records of the National Archives and the FBI, and interviews with former civil servants, Johnson recreates the vibrant gay subculture that flourished in New Deal-era Washington and takes us inside the security interrogation rooms where thousands of Americans were questioned about their sex lives. The homosexual purges ended promising careers, ruined lives, and pushed many to suicide. But, as Johnson also shows, the purges brought victims together to protest their treatment, helping launch a new civil rights struggle.
The Lavender Scare shatters the myth that homosexuality has only recently become a national political issue, changing the way we think about both the McCarthy era and the origins of the gay rights movement. And perhaps just as importantly, this book is a cautionary tale, reminding us of how acts taken by the government in the name of "national security" during the Cold War resulted in the infringement of the civil liberties of thousands of Americans.
Delving into three hundred years of Chinese literature, from the mid-sixteenth century to the mid-nineteenth, The Libertine’s Friend uncovers the complex and fascinating history of male homosexual and homosocial relations in the late imperial era. Drawing particularly on overlooked works of pornographic fiction, Giovanni Vitiello offers a frank exploration of the importance of same-sex love and eroticism to the evolution of masculinity in China.
Vitiello’s story unfolds chronologically, beginning with the earliest sources on homoeroticism in pre-imperial China and concluding with a look at developments in the twentieth century. Along the way, he identifies a number of recurring characters—for example, the libertine scholar, the chivalric hero, and the lustful monk—and sheds light on a set of key issues, including the social and legal boundaries that regulated sex between men, the rise of male prostitution, and the aesthetics of male beauty. Drawing on this trove of material, Vitiello presents a historical outline of changing notions of male homosexuality in China, revealing the integral part that same-sex desire has played in its culture.
This remarkable account of gays in Cuba links the treatment of male homosexuality under Castro with prejudices and preconceptions prevalent in Cuban society before the Revolution. Ian Lumsden argues that much of the present discussion does not acknowledge the significant improvements that have occurred in the last decade. As an antidote to what he considers wide-spread misinformation, Lumsden locates the current issues surrounding homosexual identity within the broad context of Cuban culture, history, and social policy and makes revealing comparisons to the experience of homosexuals in other Latin American countries.
Lumsden explores the historic roots of the oppression of homosexuals through such issues as race, religion, and gender. He considers the cultural history and current erosion of traditional "machismo," the correlation between traditional women's roles and the relationships between gay men, and homosexuality as defined by the law and as presented in typical sexual education. He addresses the international controversy over state-imposed sanatoriums for HIV/AIDS patients, and details the social scene, the varying ideals among different generations of gay Cubans, gay life and family ties, and the difference between being publicly and privately gay in Cuba.
Lumsden's involvement over the years in gay culture in Cuba, his interviews with gay Cuban men, and his formidable scholarship produce a strikingly honest, accurate portrayal of the changes in homosexual life.
Margaret Mead Made Me Gay is the intellectual autobiography of cultural anthropologist Esther Newton, a pioneer in gay and lesbian studies. Chronicling the development of her ideas from the excitement of early feminism in the 1960s to friendly critiques of queer theory in the 1990s, this collection covers a range of topics such as why we need more precise sexual vocabularies, why there have been fewer women doing drag than men, and how academia can make itself more hospitable to queers. It brings together such classics as “The Mythic Mannish Lesbian” and “Dick(less) Tracy and the Homecoming Queen” with entirely new work such as “Theater: Gay Anti-Church.” Newton’s provocative essays detail a queer academic career while offering a behind-the-scenes view of academic homophobia. In four sections that correspond to major periods and interests in her life—”Drag and Camp,” “Lesbian-Feminism,” “Butch,” and “Queer Anthropology”—the volume reflects her successful struggle to create a body of work that uses cultural anthropology to better understand gender oppression, early feminism, theatricality and performance, and the sexual and erotic dimensions of fieldwork. Combining personal, theoretical, and ethnographic perspectives, Margaret Mead Made Me Gay also includes photographs from Newton’s personal and professional life. With wise and revealing discussions of the complex relations between experience and philosophy, the personal and the political, and identities and practices, Margaret Mead Made Me Gay is important for anyone interested in the birth and growth of gay and lesbian studies.
Mobile Cultures provides much-needed, empirically grounded studies of the connections between new media technologies, the globalization of sexual cultures, and the rise of queer Asia. The availability and use of new media—fax machines, mobile phones, the Internet, electronic message boards, pagers, and global television—have grown exponentially in Asia over the past decade. This explosion of information technology has sparked a revolution, transforming lives and lifestyles, enabling the creation of communities and the expression of sexual identities in a region notorious for the regulation of both information and sexual conduct. Whether looking at the hanging of toy cartoon characters like “Hello Kitty” from mobile phones to signify queer identity in Japan or at the development of queer identities in Indonesia or Singapore, the essays collected here emphasize the enormous variance in the appeal and uses of new media from one locale to another.
Scholars, artists, and activists from a range of countries, the contributors chronicle the different ways new media galvanize Asian queer communities in Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, India, and around the world. They consider phenomena such as the uses of the Internet among gay, lesbian, or queer individuals in Taiwan and South Korea; the international popularization of Japanese queer pop culture products such as Yaoi manga; and a Thai website’s reading of a scientific tract on gay genetics in light of Buddhist beliefs. Essays also explore the politically subversive possibilities opened up by the proliferation of media technologies, examining, for instance, the use of Cyberjaya—Malaysia’s government-backed online portal—to form online communities in the face of strict antigay laws.
Contributors. Chris Berry, Tom Boellstorff, Larissa Hjorth, Katrien Jacobs, Olivia Khoo, Fran Martin, Mark McLelland, David Mullaly, Baden Offord, Sandip Roy, Veruska Sabucco, Audrey Yue
For decades, Singapore's gay activists have sought equality and justice in a state where law is used to stifle basic civil and political liberties. In her groundbreaking book, Mobilizing Gay Singapore, Lynette Chua asks, what does a social movement look like in an authoritarian state? She takes an expansive view of the gay movement to examine its emergence, development, strategies, and tactics, as well as the roles of law and rights in social processes.
Chua tells this important story using in-depth interviews with gay activists, observations of the movement's activities-including "Pink Dot" events, where thousands of Singaporeans gather in annual celebrations of gay pride-movement documents, government statements, and media reports. She shows how activists deploy "pragmatic resistance" to gain visibility and support, tackle political norms that suppress dissent, and deal with police harassment, while avoiding direct confrontations with the law.
Mobilizing Gay Singapore also addresses how these brave, locally engaged citizens come out into the open as gay activists and expand and diversify their efforts in the global queer political movement.
In the twentieth century, countless Americans claimed gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender identities, forming a movement to secure social as well as political equality. This collection of essays considers the history as well as the historiography of the queer identities and struggles that developed in the United States in the midst of widespread upheaval and change.
Whether the subject is an individual life story, a community study, or an aspect of public policy, these essays illuminate the ways in which individuals in various locales understood the nature of their desires and the possibilities of resisting dominant views of normality and deviance. Theoretically informed, but accessible, the essays shed light too on the difficulties of writing history when documentary evidence is sparse or "coded." Taken together these essays suggest that while some individuals and social networks might never emerge from the shadows, the persistent exploration of the past for their traces is an integral part of the on-going struggle for queer rights.
How does the standard of living of gay men and lesbians compare with that of heterosexuals? Do homosexuals make financial and family decisions differently? Why are the professional lives of gay men and lesbians dissimilar from those of heterosexuals? Or do they even differ? Have gay people benefited from the recent economic boom? Or have public policies denied them their fair share?
Money, Myths, and Change provides new answers to these complex questions. This is the first comprehensive work to explore the economic lives of gays and lesbians in the United States. M. V. Lee Badgett weaves through and debunks common stereotypes about gay privilege, income, and consumer behavior. Studying the ends and means of gay life from an economic perspective, she disproves the assumption that gay men and lesbians are more affluent than heterosexuals, that they inspire discrimination when they come out of the closet, that they consume more conspicuously, that they enjoy a more self-indulgent, even hedonistic lifestyle. Badgett gets to the heart of these misconceptions through an analysis of the crucial issues that affect the livelihood of gay men and lesbians: discrimination in the workplace, denial of health care benefits to domestic partners and children, lack of access to legal institutions such as marriage, the corporate wooing of gay consumer dollars, and the use of gay economic clout to inspire social and political change.
Both timely and readable, Money, Myths, and Change stands as a much-needed corrective to the assumptions that inhibit gay economic equality. It is a definitive work that sheds new light on just what it means to be gay or lesbian in the United States.
In this rich, surprising portrait of the world of lesbian and gay relationships, Christopher Carrington unveils the complex and artful ways that gay people create and maintain both homes and "chosen" families for themselves.
"Carefully separating stereotype from reality, Carrington investigates family in the gay and lesbian community. Relying upon interviews and observation, the author analyzes the loves and routings of 52 diverse lesbian, gay, and bisexual couples in the Bay area. . . . [He] closes the work with a discussion of the raging same-sex marriage debate and posits an enlightened solution to this dilemma." —Library Journal
In 1993, simply the idea that lesbians and gays should be able to serve openly in the military created a firestorm of protest from right-wing groups and powerful social conservatives that threatened to derail the entire agenda of a newly elected President. Nine short years later, in the wake of September 11, 2001, the Pentagon's suspension of discharge of gay and lesbians went largely overlooked and unremarked by political pundits, news organizations, military experts, religious leaders and gay activists. How can this collective cultural silence be explained? Officially Gay follows the military's century-long attempt to identify and exclude gays and lesbians. It traces how the military historically constructed definitions of homosexual identity relying upon religious, medical, and psychological discourses that defined homosexuals as evil, degenerate, and unstable, making their risk to national security obvious, and mandating their exclusion from the Armed Services. Officially Gay argues that this process made possible greater regulation and scrutiny of gays and lesbians both in and out of the military while simultaneously helping to create a gay and lesbian political movement and helped shape the direction that movement would take.
Out and Running is the first systematic analysis of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) political representation that explores the dynamics of state legislative campaigns and the influence of lesbian and gay legislators in the state policymaking process. By examining state legislative elections from 1992 to 2006 and state policymaking from 1992 to 2009, Donald Haider-Markel suggests that the LGBT community can overcome hurdles and win elections; and, once in office, these officials can play a critical role in the policy representation of the community.
However, he also discovers that there are limits to where and when LGBT candidates can run for office and that, while their presence in office often enhances policy representation, it can also create backlash. But even with some of these negative consequences, Out and Running provides compelling evidence that gays and lesbians are more likely to see beneficial legislation pass by increasing the number of LGBT state legislators. Indeed, grassroots politics in the states may allow the LGBT community its best opportunity for achieving its policy goals.
The contributors to Out Front take a hard look at the emergent relationship between sexual politics and the labor movement. With a fundamental focus on the relationship between class and social identity, they explore real and potential connections between the gay rights and labor movements. Encompassing a range of political issues concerning rights and representation, the essays have been shaped by the combined influences of trade unionism and identity politics of New Left social movements. In their examinations of worker and gay rights, the scholars, artists, and activists who speak in this volume argue that neither the labor movement nor the gay rights movement will make substantial progress without a deeper understanding of the connections between identity politics and class. Included is a major policy statement by AFL-CIO president John J. Sweeney. Four other labor leaders—Bill Fletcher Jr., Yvette Hererra, Gloria Johnson, and Van Allen Sheets—discuss homophobia as “labor’s new frontier.” Nikhil Pal Singh’s conversation with lesbian activist Amber Hollibaugh and a virtuoso piece by filmmaker Tami Gold offer incisive personal histories and commentaries, which Cathy J. Cohen takes the mainstream gay and lesbian movement to task for not adequately or consistently focusing on issues of class.
Contributors. Cathy J. Cohen, Bill Fletcher Jr., Tami Gold, Yvette Herrera, Amber Hollibaugh, Gloria Johnson, Kitty Krupat, Patrick McCreery, Van Allen Sheets, Nikhal Pal Singh, John J. Sweeney
Visibility matters to activists—to their social and political relevance, their credibility, their influence. But invisibility matters, too, in times of political hostility or internal crisis. Out in Africa is the first to present an intimate look at how Namibian and South African lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) organizations have cultivated visibility and invisibility as strategies over time. As such, it reveals the complexities of the LGBT movements in both countries as these organizations make use of Western terminology and notions of identity to gain funding even as they work to counter the perception that they are “un-African.”
Different sociopolitical conditions in Namibia and South Africa affected how activists in each country campaigned for LGBT rights between 1995 and 2006. Focusing on this period, Ashley Currier shows how, in Namibia, LGBT activists struggled against ruling party leaders’ homophobic rhetoric and how, at the same time, black LGBT citizens of South Africa, though enjoying constitutional protections, greater visibility, and heightened activism, nonetheless confronted homophobic violence because of their gender and sexual nonconformity.
As it tells the story of the evolving political landscape in postapartheid Namibia and South Africa, Out in Africa situates these countries’ movements in relation to developments in pan-African LGBT organizing and offers broader insights into visibility as a social movement strategy rather than simply as a static accomplishment or outcome of political organizing.
Can the U.S. military integrate gay personnel into its ranks and still accomplish its mission? In 1993, this question became the center of a heated debate when President Clinton attempted to lift the long-standing ban on gays in the military. This debate persists because the compromise policy "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue," faces serious legal challenges, and is likely to go to the Supreme Court before the end of the decade. Just below the surface of this debate rages a more general argument about the status of gay people in America.
Both sides base their views on assumptions about the consequences of integration. Even defenders of the ban grudgingly acknowledge that homosexuals are fully capable of serving with distinction. Few question gay service members' abilities or patriotism; justifications for the ban are now predicated on heterosexuals' negative reactions.
Out in Force refutes the notions that homosexuality is incompatible with military service and that gay personnel would undermine order and discipline. Leading social science scholars of sexual orientation and the military offer reasoned and comprehensive discussions about military organizations, human sexuality, and attitudes toward individuals and groups. They demonstrate forcefully that the debate is really about the military as an institution, and how that institution will adapt to larger social changes. The contributors show that the ban could be successfully eliminated, and set forth a program for implementation. In sorting opinion from fact, myth from reality, Out in Force stands as an invaluable guide for the military, lawmakers, and the courts as they continue to grapple with this question of institutional and societal change.
Out In The South
edited by Carlos L. Dews and Carolyn Leste Law Temple University Press, 2001 Library of Congress HQ76.3.U52S276 2001 | Dewey Decimal 306.7660975
In this book gays and lesbian from the Deep South to East Texas and Appalachia speak from vivid personal experience and turn an analytical eye on the South and its culture. Some contributors examine the power of traditional Southern attitudes toward race and religion, and consider the "don't ask, don't tell" attitude about homosexuality in some communities (the "public secret"). Other contributors show how gay culture is thriving in the form of women's festivals, gay bars, and unusual networks such as that of Asian and Pacific Islanders in Atlanta.
Out in the South is organized into sections that focus on a central metaphor of space and location. This grounds the book in the sense of the South as a special region and in the inside/outside dilemma faced by many gay and lesbian Southerners as they negotiate their place in an often-inhospitable homeland.
Out in the Union tells the continuous story of queer American workers from the mid-1960s through 2013. Miriam Frank shrewdly chronicles the evolution of labor politics with queer activism and identity formation, showing how unions began affirming the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender workers in the 1970s and 1980s. She documents coming out on the job and in the union as well as issues of discrimination and harassment, and the creation of alliances between unions and LGBT communities.
Featuring in-depth interviews with LGBT and labor activists, Frank provides an inclusive history of the convergence of labor and LGBT interests. She carefully details how queer caucuses in local unions introduced domestic partner benefits and union-based AIDS education for health care workers-innovations that have been influential across the U.S. workforce. Out in the Union also examines organizing drives at queer workplaces, campaigns for marriage equality, and other gay civil rights issues to show the enduring power of LGBT workers.
A companion volume to Out in the Field, a benchmark examination of lesbian and gay experiences in anthropology, Out in Theory presents lesbian and gay anthropology as a distinct specialization and addresses the theoretical issues that define the emerging field.
This compelling collection of essays details the scholarly and personal factors that affected the emergence of lesbian and gay anthropology and speculates on the directions it will take as it continues to grow and diversify. Seeking to legitimize the field's scholarship and address issues in terminology, the essays also define the lesbian and gay anthropology's scope and subject matter and locate factors that separate it from the wider concerns of the profession.
Specific essays track the emergence of lesbian and gay studies in social and cultural anthropology, linguistics, archaeology, and in various areas of anthropological activism. They also consider how feminist anthropology helped define the field and how transgendered experience, queer theory, and race and class studies are promoting new directions of inquiry within lesbian and gay anthropology.
Over the past 30 years, the gay rights movement has moved from the margins to the center of American politics, sparking debate from bedroom to boardroom to battlefield. Out of the Closets and into the Courts analyzes recent gay rights cases and explores the complex relationship between litigation and social change.
“An excellent book, enlightening and well-written. Out of the Closets and into the Courts should be highly useful in the classroom and of interest to a broad audience.”
--Evan Gerstmann, Loyola Marymount University
“A detailed historical analysis of changes in the law surrounding gay and lesbian relationships, Out of the Closets and into the Courts also breaks fresh ground in thinking about how and when law can be used to affect social change. The concept of a legal opportunity structure, which complements the concept of political opportunity structure, proves to be very useful in analyzing judicial changes in the law. A very impressive analysis.”
--Mayer Zald, Professor Emeritus, University of Michigan
“Ellen Andersen's book integrates sophisticated sociolegal theory and thorough empirical research into a compelling, insightful analysis of legal mobilization campaigns led by the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund. This study makes a significant contribution to scholarship about struggles over gay rights in the U.S. and about legal reform politics in general.”
--Michael McCann, University of Washington
Ellen Ann Andersen is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.
On a summer night in 2007, the Azure Party, part of Sydney’s annual gay and lesbian Mardi Gras, is underway. Alongside the party outfits, drugs, lights, and DJs is a volunteer care team trained to deal with the drug-related emergencies that occasionally occur. But when police appear at the gates with drug-detecting dogs, mild panic ensues. Some patrons down all their drugs, heightening their risk of overdose. Others try their luck at the gates. After twenty-six attendees are arrested with small quantities of illicit substances, the party is shut down and the remaining partygoers disperse into the city streets. For Kane Race, the Azure Party drug search is emblematic of a broader technology of power that converges on embodiment, consumption, and pleasure in the name of health. In Pleasure Consuming Medicine, he illuminates the symbolic role that the illicit drug user fulfills for the neoliberal state. As he demonstrates, the state’s performance of moral sovereignty around substances designated “illicit” bears little relation to the actual dangers of drug consumption; in fact, it exacerbates those dangers.
Race does not suggest that drug use is risk-free, good, or bad, but rather that the regulation of drugs has become a site where ideological lessons about the propriety of consumption are propounded. He argues that official discourses about drug use conjure a space where the neoliberal state can be seen to be policing the “excesses” of the amoral market. He explores this normative investment in drug regimes and some “counterpublic health” measures that have emerged in response. These measures, which Race finds in certain pragmatic gay men’s health and HIV prevention practices, are not cloaked in moralistic language, and they do not cast health as antithetical to pleasure.
This book explores the origins and history of the modern American movement for homosexual rights, which originated in Los Angeles in the late 1940s and continues today. Part ethnography and part social history, it is a detailed account of the history of the movement as manifested through the emergence of four related organizations: Mattachine, ONE Incorporated, the Homosexual Information Center (HIC), and the Institute for the Study of Human Resources (ISHR), which began doing business as ONE Incorporated when the two organizations merged in 1995. Pre-Gay L.A. is a chronicle of how one clandestine special interest association emerged as a powerful political force that spawned several other organizations over a period of more than sixty years.
Relying on extended interviews with participants as well as a full review of the archives of the Homosexual Information Center, C. Todd White unearths the institutional histories of the gay and lesbian rights movement and the myriad personalities involved, including Mattachine founder Harry Hay; ONE Magazine editors Dale Jennings, Donald Slater, and Irma Wolf; ONE Incorporated founder Dorr Legg; and many others. Fighting to decriminalize homosexuality and to obtain equal rights, the viable organizations that these individuals helped to establish significantly impacted legal policies not only in Los Angeles but across the United States, affecting the lives of most of us living in America today.
What does it mean to be queer and Asian American at the turn of the century? The writers, activists, essayists, and artists who contribute to this volume consider how Asian American racial identity and queer sexuality interconnect in mutually shaping and complicating ways. Their collective aim (in the words of the editors) is "to articulate a new conception of Asian American racial identity, its heterogeneity, hybridity, and multiplicity -- concepts that after all underpinned the Asian American moniker from its very inception."
Q & A approaches matters of identity from a variety of points of view and academic disciplines in order to explore the multiple crossings of race and ethnicity with sexuality and gender. Drawing together the work of visual artists, fiction writers, community organizers, scholars, and participants in roundtable discussions, the collection gathers an array of voices and experiences that represent the emerging communities of a queer Asian America. Collectively, these contributors contend that Asian American studies needs to be more attentive to issues of sexuality and that queer studies needs to be more attentive to other aspects of difference, especially race and ethnicity. Vigorously rejecting the notion that a symmetrical relationship between race and homosexuality would weaken lesbian/gay and queer movements, the editors refuse to "believe that a desirably queer world is one in which we remain perpetual aliens -- queer houseguests -- in a queer nation."
Cindy Patton and Benigno Sánchez-Eppler, eds. Duke University Press, 2000 Library of Congress HQ76.25.Q368 2000 | Dewey Decimal 306.766
Queer Diasporas presents essays that explore how sexuality and sexual identity change when individuals, ideologies, and media move across literal and figurative boundaries. Speaking from a diverse range of ethnic, racial, and national sites, the contributors to this volume illustrate how queer identity in particular is affected in ways that are as varied and nuanced as the cultural, social, and physical environments themselves. Incorporating literary analysis, ethnographic research, and theories of diaspora, migration, and transnationalism, the essays in this volume address an impressive range of topics, from the divergent medical and epidemiological understandings of the AIDS pandemic to 1950s lesbian pulp fiction. While one chapter focuses on the appropriation of religious ceremony by gay Filipino immigrants in New York City, another investigates the implicit connection between Jewishness and homosexuality in the work of Freud. The gendering of domestic roles in food preparation and consumption in Japanese society gives way to a discussion of Cuban and Jamaican homoeroticism as seen in the works of Reinaldo Arenas and Claude McKay. Chilean author D’Halmar’s orientalization of Spain as queer space and the hybrid nature of queer ‘zine culture in Quebec are the subject of others. The collection concludes with a monologue by “Walid,” a young gay Arab living in the occupied territory, whose sexual and national identities change according to his sexual and social needs. Illuminating the complex nature of queerness in the postmodern world, Queer Diasporas contributes to the advancement of gay and lesbian studies. It will be important to those working in cultural, literary, and postcolonial studies. Contributors. Michele Aina Barale, Daniel Boyarin, Sandra Buckley, Rhonda Cobham, Amir Sumaka’i Fink, Marcie Frank, Martin F. Manalansan IV, Sylvia Molloy, Cindy Patton, Jacob Press, Jennifer Robertson, Benigno Sánchez-Eppler
In Queer in Russia Laurie Essig examines the formation of gay identity and community in the former Soviet Union. As a sociological fieldworker, she began her research during the late 1980s, before any kind of a public queer identity existed in that country. After a decade of conducting interviews, as well as observing and analyzing plays, books, pop music, and graffiti, Essig presents the first sustained study of how and why there was no Soviet gay community or even gay identity before perestroika and the degree to which this situation has—or has not—changed. While male homosexual acts were criminalized in Russia before 1993, women attracted to women were policed by the medical community, who saw them less as criminals than as diseased persons potentially cured by drug therapy or transsexual surgery. After describing accounts of pre-perestroika persecution, Essig examines the more recent state of sexual identities in Russia. Although the fall of communism brought new freedom to Russian queers, there are still no signs of a mass movement forming around the issue, and few identify themselves as lesbians or gay men, even when they are involved in same-sex relations. Essig does reveal, however, vibrant manifestations of gay life found at the local level—in restaurants, discos, clubs, and cruising strips, in newspapers, journals, literature, and the theater. Concluding with a powerful exploration of the surprising affinities between some of Russia’s most prominent nationalists and its queers, Queer in Russia fills a gap in both Russian and cultural studies.
Todd A. Henry, editor Duke University Press, 2020 Library of Congress HQ75.16.K6H467 2019
Since the end of the nineteenth century, the Korean people have faced successive waves of foreign domination, authoritarian regimes, forced dispersal, and divided development. Throughout these turbulent times, “queer” Koreans were ignored, minimized, and erased in narratives of their modern nation, East Asia, and the wider world. This interdisciplinary volume challenges such marginalization through critical analyses of non-normative sexuality and gender variance. Considering both personal and collective forces, contributors extend individualized notions of queer neoliberalism beyond those typically set in Western queer theory. Along the way, they recount a range of illuminating topics, from shamanic rituals during the colonial era and B-grade comedy films under Cold War dictatorship to toxic masculinity in today’s South Korean military and transgender confrontations with the resident registration system. More broadly, Queer Korea offers readers new ways of understanding the limits and possibilities of human liberation under exclusionary conditions of modernity in Asia and beyond.
Contributors. Pei Jean Chen, John (Song Pae) Cho, Chung-kang Kim, Timothy Gitzen, Todd A. Henry, Merose Hwang, Ruin, Layoung Shin, Shin-ae Ha, John Whittier Treat
Queer Twin Cities
Twin Cities GLBT Oral History Project University of Minnesota Press, 2010 Library of Congress HQ75.6.U52M566 2010 | Dewey Decimal 306.76609776579
The Twin Cities is home to one of the largest and most vital GLBT populations in the nation-and one of the highest percentages of gay residents in the country. Drawn from the pioneering work of the Twin Cities GLBT Oral History Project-a collective organization of students, scholars, and activists devoted to documenting and interpreting the lives of GLBT people in Minneapolis and St. Paul-Queer Twin Cities is a uniquely critical collection of essays on Minnesota's vibrant queer communities, past and present.
A rich blend of oral history, archival research, and ethnography, Queer Twin Cities uses sexuality to chart connections between people's lives in Minnesota. Topics range from turn-of-the-century Minneapolis amid moral reform-including the highly publicized William Williams murder trial and efforts to police Bridge Square, aka "skid row"-to northern Minnesota and the importance of male companionship among lumber workers, and to postwar life, when the increased visibility of queer life went hand in hand with increased regulation, repression, and violence. Other essays present a portrait of early queer spaces in the Twin Cities, such as Kirmser's Bar, the Viking Room, and the Persian Palms, and the proliferation of establishments like the Dugout and the 19 Bar. Exploring the activism of GLBT/Two-Spirit indigenous people, the antipornography movements of the 1980s, and the role of gay men in the gentrification of Minneapolis neighborhoods, this volume brings the history of queer life and politics in the Twin Cities into fascinating focus.
Engaging and revelatory, Queer Twin Cities offers a critical analysis of local history and community and fills a glaring omission in the culture and history of Minnesota, looking not only to a remarkable past, but to our collective future.
Reclaiming Queer is an examination of the rhetorical linkage of queer theory in the academy with street-level queer activism in the 1980s and early 1990s.
The late 1980s and early 1990s were a defining historical moment for both queer activism and queer theory in the United States. LGBT communities, confronted with the alarming violence and homophobia of the AIDS crisis, often responded with angry, militant forms of activism designed not merely to promote acceptance or tolerance, but to forge identity and strength from victimization and assert loudly and forcefully their rights to safety and humanity. The activist reclamation of the word “queer” is one marker of this shift in ideology and practice, and it was mirrored in academic circles by the concurrent emergence of the new field of “queer theory.” That is, as queer activists were mobilizing in the streets, queer theorists were producing a similar foment in the halls and publications of academia, questioning regulatory categories of gender and sexuality, and attempting to illuminate the heteronormative foundations of Western thought. Notably, the narrative of queer theory’s development often describes it as arising from or being inspired by queer activism.
In Reclaiming Queer, Erin J. Rand examines both queer activist and academic practices during this period, taking as her primary object the rhetorical linkage of queer theory in the academy with street-level queer activism. Through this strategic conjuncture of activism and academia, Rand grapples with the specific conditions for and constraints on rhetorical agency in each context. She examines the early texts that inaugurated the field of queer theory, Queer Nation’s infamous “Queers Read This” manifesto, Larry Kramer’s polemic speeches and editorials, the Lesbian Avengers’ humorous and outrageous antics, the history of ACT UP, and the more recent appearance of Gay Shame activism. From these activist and academic discourses, Rand builds a theory of rhetorical agency that posits queerness as the very condition from which agency emerges.
Reclaiming Queer thus offers a critical look at the rhetoric of queer activism, engages the history of queer theory’s institutionalization and the politics of its proliferation, suggests a radically contextual understanding of rhetorical agency and form, and argues for the centrality of queerness to all rhetorical action.
In a world in which religion and homosexuality are often by definition incompatible, it is crucial to hear from gay men and women about how they perceive themselves to be religious or spiritual people. Eliciting powerful, frank, and sometimes troubling responses, David Shallenberger interviewed gay men and women who grew up in families that belonged to traditional religions-Jewish, Roman Catholic, and Protestant-that rejected homosexuality as an unacceptable life-style. When these children grew into adulthood and "came out," many rejected the religion of their childhood as they sought out a more accepting gay community. But once they became comfortable with their new gay identity, they began to experience a spiritual hunger and a desire to be part of a religious community. Some sought to return to the traditions from which they came; others desired membership in new religious communities.
The quest for an integration of homosexuality and spirituality is the focus of Reclaiming the Spirit. Shallenberger asks how individuals can balance both a gay and a religious identity, whether coming out is a spiritual experience, and how coming out affects an individual's relationship to a traditional religious community. Divided into chapters that correspond to the common stages of spiritual integration, Reclaiming the Spirit is immensely readable and introduces an important group of voices into the hotly contested debates surrounding religion and gay participation.
Based on ethnographic research by an interdisciplinary team of scholars and activists, Religion at the Corner of Bliss and Nirvana illuminates the role that religion plays in the civic and political experiences of new migrants in the United States. By bringing innovative questions and theoretical frameworks to bear on the experiences of Chinese, Filipino, Mexican, Salvadoran, and Vietnamese migrants, the contributors demonstrate how groups and individuals negotiate multiple religious, cultural, and national identities, and how religious faiths are transformed through migration. Taken together, their essays show that migrants’ religious lives are much more than replications of home in a new land. They reflect a process of adaptation to new physical and cultural environments, and an ongoing synthesis of cultural elements from the migrants’ countries of origin and the United States.
As they conducted research, the contributors not only visited churches and temples but also single-room-occupancy hotels, brothels, tattoo-removal clinics, and the streets of San Francisco, El Salvador, Mexico, and Vietnam. Their essays include an exploration of how faith-based organizations can help LGBT migrants surmount legal and social complexities, an examination of transgendered sex workers’ relationship with the unofficial saint Santisima Muerte, a comparison of how a Presbyterian mission and a Buddhist temple in San Francisco help Chinese immigrants to acculturate, and an analysis of the transformation of baptismal rites performed by Mayan migrants. The voices of gang members, Chinese and Vietnamese Buddhist nuns, members of Pentecostal churches, and many others animate this collection. In the process of giving voice to these communities, the contributors interrogate theories about acculturation, class, political and social capital, gender and sexuality, the sociology of religion, transnationalism, and globalization. The collection includes twenty-one photographs by Jerry Berndt.
Contributors. Luis Enrique Bazan, Kevin M. Chun, Hien Duc Do, Patricia Fortuny Loret de Mola, Joaquin Jay Gonzalez III, Sarah Horton, Cymene Howe, Mimi Khúc, Jonathan H. X. Lee, Lois Ann Lorentzen, Andrea Maison, Dennis Marzan, Rosalina Mira, Claudine del Rosario, Susanna Zaraysky
Where did the right to privacy come from and what does it mean? Grappling with the critical issues involving women and gays that relate to the recent Supreme Court appointment, Vincent J. Samar develops a definition of legal privacy, discusses the reasons why and the degree to which privacy should be protected, and shows the relationship between privacy and personal autonomy. He answers former Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork’s questions about scope, content, and legal justification for a general right to privacy and emphasizes issues involving gays and lesbians, Samar maintains that these privacy issues share a common constitutional-ethical underpinning with issues such as abortion, surrogate motherhood, drug testing, and the right to die.
Why is it so much harder for American same-sex couples to get married than it is for them to adopt children? And why does our military prevent gays from serving openly even though jurisdictions nationwide continue to render such discrimination illegal? Illuminating the conditions that engender these contradictory policies, Same Sex, Different Politics explains why gay rights advocates have achieved dramatically different levels of success from one policy area to another.
The first book to compare results across a wide range of gay rights struggles, this volume explores debates over laws governing military service, homosexual conduct, adoption, marriage and partner recognition, hate crimes, and civil rights. It reveals that in each area, the gay rights movement’s achievements depend both on Americans’ perceptions of its demands and on the political venue in which the conflict plays out. Adoption policy, for example, generally takes shape in a decentralized system of courts that enables couples to target sympathetic judges, while fights for gay marriage generally culminate in legislation or ballot referenda against which it is easier to mount opposition. Brilliantly synthesizing all the factors that contribute to each kind of outcome, Same Sex, Different Politics establishes a new framework for understanding the trajectory of a movement.
Is the United States a heterosexual regime? If it is, how may we understand the political position of those who cannot or will not align themselves with heterosexuality? With these provocative questions, Shane Phelan raises the issue of whether lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgendered people can be seen as citizens at all. Can citizenship be made queer? Or does citizenship require the exclusion of those who are regarded as queer to preserve the "equality" that it promises?
In Sexual Strangers, Shane Phelan argues that, in the United States, queers are strangers -- not exactly the enemy, since they are not excluded from all rights of citizenship, but not quite members. Rather, they are ambiguous figures who trouble the border between "us" and "them," a border just as central to liberal regimes as to other states. Life on this border structures both the exclusion of sexual minorities and their ambivalence about becoming part of the "mainstream."
Sexual Strangers addresses questions of long-standing importance to minority group politics: the meaning and terms of inclusion, respect, and resistance. Phelan looks at citizenship as including not only equal protection and equal rights to such institutions as marriage and military service, but also political and cultural visibility, as inclusion in the national imaginary. She discusses the continuing stigmatization of bisexuals and transgendered people within lesbian and gay communities as a result of the attempt to flee from strangeness, a flight that inevitably produces new strangers. Her goal is to convince students of politics, both academic and activist, to embrace the rewards of strangeness as a means of achieving inclusive citizenship, rather than a citizenship that defines itself by what it will not accept.
Applying the complexities of literacy development and personal ethos to the teaching of composition, Zan Meyer Goncalves challenges writing teachers to consider ethos as a series of identity performances shaped by the often-inequitable social contexts of their classrooms and communities. Using the rhetorical experiences of students who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or transgender, she proposes a new way of thinking about ethos that addresses the challenges of social justice, identity, and transfer issues in the classroom.
Goncalves offers an innovative approach to teaching identity performance theory bound by social contexts. She applies this new approach to theories of specificity and intersectionality, illustrating how teachers can help students redefine the relationship between their social identities and their writing. She also addresses bringing social activism and identity politics into the classroom, helping writers make transfers across rhetorical contexts and linking students' interests to public conversations.
Theoretical and practical, Sexuality and the Politics of Ethos in the Writing Classroom provides teachers of first-year and advanced composition studies with useful, detailed assignments based in specific identity performance. Goncalves offers techniques to subvert oppressive language practices, while encouraging students to recognize themselves as writers, citizens, and active participants in their own educations and communities.
To be taken seriously, therapies that claim to “cure” homosexuality wrap themselves in lab coats. Even though the fit is bad, and such therapies and their theorists now inhabit the scientific fringe, the science of sexuality has made some adjustments, too, Tom Waidzunas tells us in this provocative work.
Intervening in the politics of sexuality and science, The Straight Line argues that scientific definitions of sexual orientation do not merely reflect the results of investigations into human nature, but rather emerge through a process of social negotiation between opposing groups. The demedicalization of homosexuality and the discrediting of reparative therapies, ex-gay ministries, and reorientation research have, Waidzunas contends, required scientists to enforce key boundaries around scientific expertise and research methods. Drawing on extensive participant observation at conferences for ex-gays, reorientation therapists, mainstream psychologists, and survivors of ex-gay therapy, as well as interviews with experts and activists, The Straight Line traces reorientation debates in the United States from the 1950s to the present, following homosexuality therapies from the mainstream to the margins. As the ex-gay movement has become increasingly transnational in recent years, Waidzunas turns to Uganda, where ideas about the scientific nature of homosexuality influenced the passage of the Anti-Homosexuality Act of 2014.
While most studies treat the ex-gay movement as a religious phenomenon, this book looks at how the movement, in its attempts to establish legitimacy, has engaged with scientific institutions, shaping virulent anti-gay public policy.
In 1992, the voters of Colorado passed a ballot initiative amending the state constitution to prevent the state or any local government from adopting any law or policy that protected a person with a homosexual, lesbian, or bisexual orientation from discrimination. This amendment was immediately challenged in the courts as a denial of equal protection of the laws under the United States Constitution. This litigation ultimately led to a landmark decision by the United States Supreme Court invalidating the Colorado ballot initiative. Suzanne Goldberg, an attorney involved in the case from the beginning on behalf of the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, and Lisa Keen, a journalist who covered the initiative campaign and litigation, tell the story of this case, providing an inside view of this complex and important litigation.
Starting with the background of the initiative, the authors tell us about the debates over strategy, the court proceedings, and the impact of each stage of the litigation on the parties involved. The authors explore the meaning of legal protection for gay people and the arguments for and against the Colorado initiative.
This book is essential reading for anyone interested in the development of civil rights protections for gay people and the evolution of what it means to be gay in contemporary American society and politics. In addition, it is a rich story well told, and will be of interest to the general reader and scholars working on issues of civil rights, majority-minority relations, and the meaning of equal rights in a democratic society.
Suzanne Goldberg is an attorney with the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund. Lisa Keen is Senior Editor at the Washington Blade newspaper.
The Third Sex
Willy University of Illinois Press, 2007 Library of Congress HQ76.25.W5713 2007 | Dewey Decimal 306.766
A gold mine of information about a hidden queer culture
Thirty-two years before Simone de Beauvoir's classic TheSecond Sex, popular French novelist Willy published TheThird Sex, a vivid description of the world of European homosexuals in France, Italy, and Germany during the late 1920s. Stepping directly into the heart of gay men's culture, Willy follows homosexual nightlife into music halls, nightclubs, casinos, bars, and saunas. While he finds plenty of drug and alcohol abuse, he also discovers homosexual publishers, scientific societies, group rivalries, and opinions--both medical and political--about the nature of homosexuality itself. Lawrence R. Schehr's introduction provides context and translator's notes for this first-ever English edition.
Tortilleras Negotiating Intimacy: Love, Friendship, and Sex in Queer Mexico City is the first ethnography in English to focus primarily on women’s sexual and intimate cultures in Mexico. The book shows the transformation of intimacy in the lives of three generations of women in queer spaces in contemporary Mexico City, as their sexual citizenship changes, including references to same-sex marriage and anti-discrimination laws. The book shows how these individuals reconfigure relationships through marriage, polyamory, friendship, and sex. Tortilleras Negotiating Intimacy suggests that “new” intimate cartographies are emerging in Mexico City, ultimately redefining relationships, gender, and mexicanidad. Building on ethnographic data collected over the past decade, including forty-five in-depth interviews with women between the ages of twenty-two and sixty-five participating in LGBT spaces, Tortilleras Negotiating Intimacy shows how lesbian women (mainly cis, but some trans) negotiate friendship, same-sex marriage, polyamory, and sexual practices, reinventing love, eroticism, friendship, and ultimately the social organization of Latin American societies.
For two years, Philip Gambone traveled the length and breadth of the United States, talking candidly with LGBTQ people about their lives. In addition to interviews from David Sedaris, George Takei, Barney Frank, and Tammy Baldwin, Travels in a Gay Nation brings us lesser-known voices—a retired Naval officer, a transgender scholar and “drag king,” a Princeton philosopher, two opera sopranos who happen to be lovers, an indie rock musician, the founder of a gay frat house, and a pair of Vermont garden designers.
In this age when contemporary gay America is still coming under attack, Gambone captures the humanity of each individual. For some, their identity as a sexual minority is crucial to their life’s work; for others, it has been less so, perhaps even irrelevant. But, whether splashy or quiet, center-stage or behind the scenes, Gambone’s subjects have managed—despite facing ignorance, fear, hatred, intolerance, injustice, violence, ridicule, or just plain indifference—to construct passionate, inspiring lives.
Finalist, Foreword Magazine’s Anthology of the Year
Outstanding Book in the High School Category, selected by the American Association of School Libraries
Best Book in Special Interest Category, selected by the Public Library Association
This landmark book combines the voices of Native Americans and non-Indians, anthropologists and others, in an exploration of gender and sexuality issues as they relate to lesbian, gay, transgendered, and other "marked" Native Americans.
Focusing on the concept of two-spirit people--individuals not necessarily gay or lesbian, transvestite or bisexual, but whose behaviors or beliefs may sometimes be interpreted by others as uncharacteristic of their sex--this book is the first to provide an intimate look at how many two-spirit people feel about themselves, how other Native Americans treat them, and how anthropologists and other scholars interpret them and their cultures.
1997 Winner of the Ruth Benedict Prize for an edited book given by the Society of Lesbian and Gay Anthropologists.
The Un-Natural State is a one-of-a-kind study of gay and lesbian life in Arkansas in the twentieth century, a deft weaving together of Arkansas history, dozens of oral histories, and Brock Thompson's own story. Thompson analyzes the meaning of rural drag shows, including a compelling description of a 1930s seasonal beauty pageant in Wilson, Arkansas, where white men in drag shared the stage with other white men in blackface, a suggestive mingling that went to the core of both racial transgression and sexual disobedience. These small town entertainments put on in churches and schools emerged decades later in gay bars across the state as a lucrative business practice and a larger means of community expression, while in the same period the state's sodomy law was rewritten to condemn sexual acts between those of the same sex in language similar to what was once used to denounce interracial sex. Thompson goes on to describe several lesbian communities established in the Ozark Mountains during the sixties and seventies and offers a substantial account of Eureka Springs's informal status as the "gay capital of the Ozarks." Through this exploration of identity formation, group articulation, political mobilization, and cultural visibility within the context of historical episodes such as the Second World War, the civil rights movement, and the AIDS epidemic, The Un-Natural State contributes not only to our understanding of gay and lesbian history but also to our understanding of the South.
Violence against lesbians and gay men has increasingly captured media and scholarly attention. But these reports tend to focus on one segment of the LGBT community—white, middle class men—and largely ignore that part of the community that arguably suffers a larger share of the violence—racial minorities, the poor, and women. In Violence against Queer People, sociologist Doug Meyer offers the first investigation of anti-queer violence that focuses on the role played by race, class, and gender.
Drawing on interviews with forty-seven victims of violence, Meyer shows that LGBT people encounter significantly different forms of violence—and perceive that violence quite differently—based on their race, class, and gender. His research highlights the extent to which other forms of discrimination—including racism and sexism—shape LGBT people’s experience of abuse. He reports, for instance, that lesbian and transgender women often described violent incidents in which a sexual or a misogynistic component was introduced, and that LGBT people of color sometimes weren’t sure if anti-queer violence was based solely on their sexuality or whether racism or sexism had also played a role. Meyer observes that given the many differences in how anti-queer violence is experienced, the present media focus on white, middle-class victims greatly oversimplifies and distorts the nature of anti-queer violence. In fact, attempts to reduce anti-queer violence that ignore race, class, and gender run the risk of helping only the most privileged gay subjects.
Many feel that the struggle for gay rights has largely been accomplished and the tide of history has swung in favor of LGBT equality. Violence against Queer People, on the contrary, argues that the lives of many LGBT people—particularly the most vulnerable—have improved very little, if at all, over the past thirty years.
The first of two groundbreaking volumes on gay history in Wisconsin, We’ve Been Here All Along provides an illuminating and nuanced picture of Wisconsin’s gay history from the reporting on the Oscar Wilde trials of 1895 to the landmark Stonewall Riots of 1969. Throughout these decades, gay Wisconsinites developed identities, created support networks, and found ways to thrive in their communities despite various forms of suppression—from the anti-vice crusades of the early twentieth century to the post-war labeling of homosexuality as an illness to the Lavender Scare of the 1950s.
In We’ve Been Here All Along, R. Richard Wagner draws on historical research and materials from his own extensive archive to uncover previously hidden stories of gay Wisconsinites. This book honors their legacy and confirms that they have been foundational to the development and evolution of the state since its earliest days
In this remarkable study, David A. J. Richards combines an interpretive history of culture and law, political philosophy, and constitutional analysis to explain the background, development, and growing impact of two of the most important and challenging human rights movements of our time, feminism and gay rights.
Richards argues that both movements are extensions of rights-based dissent, rooted in antebellum abolitionist feminism that condemned both American racism and sexism. He sees the progressive role of such radical dissent as an emancipated moral voice in the American constitutional tradition. He examines the role of dissident African Americans, Jews, women, and homosexuals in forging alternative visions of rights-based democracy. He also draws special attention to Walt Whitman's visionary poetry, showing how it made space for the silenced and subjugated voices of homosexuals in public and private culture.
According to Richards, contemporary feminism rediscovers and elaborates this earlier tradition. And, similarly, the movement for gay rights builds upon an interpretation of abolitionist feminism developed by Whitman in his defense, both in poetry and prose, of love between men. Richards explores Whitman's impact on pro-gay advocates, including John Addington Symonds, Havelock Ellis, Edward Carpenter, Oscar Wilde, and André Gide. He also discusses other diverse writers and reformers such as Margaret Sanger, Franz Boas, Elizabeth Stanton, W. E. B. DuBois, and Adrienne Rich.
Richards addresses current controversies such as the exclusion of homosexuals from the military and from the right to marriage and concludes with a powerful defense of the struggle for such constitutional rights in terms of the principles of rights-based feminism.
Exploring nearly sixty years of memoir and autobiography, Writing Desire examines the changing identity of gay men writing within a historical context. Distinguished scholar and psychoanalyst Bertram J. Cohler has carefully selected a diverse group of ten men, including historians, activists, journalists, poets, performance artists, and bloggers, whose life writing evokes the evolution of gay life in twentieth-century America.
By contrasting the personal experience of these disparate writers, Cohler illustrates the social transformations that these men helped shape. Among Cohler's diverse subjects is Alan Helms, whose journey from Indiana to New York's gay society represents the passage of men who came of age in the 1950s and 1960s, when homosexuality was considered a hidden "disease." The liberating effects of Stonewall's aftermath are chronicled in the life of Arnie Kantrowitz, the prototypical activist for gay rights in the 1970s and the founder the Gay and Lesbian Alliance against Defamation. The artistic works of Tim Miller and Mark Doty evoke loss and shock during of the early stages of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s. Cohler rounds out this collective group portrait by looking at the newest generation of writers in the Internet age via the blog of BrYaN, who did the previously unthinkable: he "outed" himself to millions of people.
A compelling mix of social history and personal biography, Writing Desire distills the experience of three generations of gay America.
Finalist, LGBT Studies, Lambda Literary Foundation