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The Kerouac Century
AS JACK KEROUAC’S centennial year draws to a close, I have been contemplating the open book of his sexuality. He married three times, had countless affairs with women, and was not above crude expressions of homophobia. However, he allied himself with his gay friends Allen Ginsberg and William S. Burroughs in the creation of theMore
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            Who did read Merrick’s books? Not his agent, Merrick eventually realized, or even his editor at Avon Books. But thousands of fans did. Sales figures are sprinkled throughout Joseph M. Ortiz’ new biography, Gordon Merrick and the Great Gay American Novel. One refers to over a million books sold. They did well in FranceMore
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Thom Gunn, a Poet on the Move
THE FIRST GLIMPSE I had of Thom Gunn was his picture in a poetry anthology titled The Modern Poets, edited by John Malcolm Brinnin and William Read. It was assigned as a textbook in an English literature class I was taking at Emory University in 1963, with consequences for me that the teacher could notMore
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The work of Kinsey, Hooker, and others all emboldened a new brand of post-Stonewall gay liberation activists ready to engage in dramatic and confrontational tactics, including disrupting APA meetings and demanding equal time to refute the theories of homosexual pathology.
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The Vote That ‘Cured’ Millions
The following speech by the late Barbara Gittings first appeared in The G&LR’s July-August 2007 issue. The speech was delivered on October 7, 2006, on the occasion of Gittings’ acceptance of the American Psychiatric Association’s Fryer Award for her contribution to GLBT mental health.
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Editor’s Note: This “Open Letter” started as a lengthy letter to the editor, but it was too long for that format and warranted more prominent placement. The author was so kind as to adapt the letter to this format.
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How Psychiatrists Came Around
The G&LR talks with an eminent LGBT psychiatrist, Jack Drescher
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IN FEVER SPORES, an eclectic collection of essays and interviews about writer William S. Burroughs, editors Brian Alessandro and Tom Cardamone make a pitch for Burroughs’ place in the “gay canon,” arguing that the novelist “has been sainted by the literary establishment in general but not the gay literati in particular.”
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La Mère
            A Woman’s Battles and Transformations strikes me as the least angry and the least politically charged of Louis’ four books. In revisiting the same material, I wondered if he had run out of something new to say. Early on in the book, Louis anticipates this possible criticism: “I want to write only the sameMore
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            Making the Rounds is alive with passion and tumult, a discovery narrative in which the writer comes to recognize herself as capable of love. More reflection on the transformation might have been nice. But then again, the journey was hectic!
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            A Secret Between Gentlemen is a carefully researched book that not only delves into an episode in early 20th-century British history but also provides an in-depth look at gay history in this era. The main story is one of great intrigue, filled with sex and crime and political scandal, outlandish lives, and an extraordinaryMore
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            The impact of the writer’s early years is echoed throughout the last two parts of Black Folk Could Fly. The lens is broadened to include perspectives from the writer’s stint working in a publishing firm in New York and his travels around the U.S. in search of what it means to be Black.
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The Digital Closet looks at how the “unlikely bedfellows” of anti-porn feminists, conservative groups such as Morality in Media (now renamed ncose, the National Center on Sexual Exploitation), and alt-right groups like the Proud Boys have influenced the development of the Internet.
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In Len & Cub, authors Meredith J. Batt and Dusty Green have assembled a large number of photographs that tell the unfolding story of Leonard Olive Keith (1891–1950) and Joseph Austin Coates (1899–1965)—the “Len” and “Cub” of the book’s title.
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Go East, Young Man
MARPHEEN CHANN’S name may not be well-known outside of Maine, where Chann is a community organizer, a public speaker, and recently became Portland’s first Cambodian American elected official, as a member of that city’s charter commission. In his new memoir Moon in Full, he comes across as a tremendously likable, openly gay man who overcameMore
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            At first glance, Making Love with the Land looks like a departure from the author’s poetry and fiction, but anyone who has read his earlier work will recognize Whitehead’s characteristic honesty, humor, and deeply traditional worldview in which humans, animals, and plants are interconnected and all equally important.
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Grimsley’s tenth novel, The Dove in the Belly, is a worthy but somewhat problematical work that ostensibly shares the theme of Dream Boy and Boulevard, that of a timid, newly out gay man who becomes obsessed with an apparently straight man, with the possibility of violence ever present.
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Short Reviews
Brief reviews of School Days: A Novel by Jonathan Galassi, Liarmouth: A Feel-Bad Romance by John Waters, and Harold Norse: Poet Maverick, Gay Laureate.
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Portraits with an Electric Charge
            Lucioni enjoys a reputation as the “painter Laureate” of Vermont, and on the face of it, he looks like many American scene painters of the 1920s and ’30s. Picture a very different world from the one we find ourselves in now, a rural America before the Civil War. Imagine pristine mountains, upland pastures, agingMore
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QAF Is Back, and Much Has Changed
Seventeen years after the U.S. series ended, Queer as Folk has gotten yet another makeover. At the helm this time around is Stephen Dunn, writer-director of 2016’s Closet Monster. The setting is pushed south and west, this time to New Orleans. But why re-reimagine Queer as Folk in 2022?
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FOR ANY ART LOVER, Florida’s infamous “Don’t say gay” law is a painful reminder of how a similar policy, aimed at erasing queer visibility, has been a mainstay in Western art museums for centuries, all the way to the present time. While there has been significant progress in the last few years, the presence andMore
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IN 1970’S NEW YORK, Julius Eastman was an outrageous presence in the avant-garde performance scene as a composer, singer, and pianist. Black and openly gay, he was an outsider. He died homeless and forgotten in 1990. As the music world grapples with righting the canon, there is a resurgence of interest in this sui generisMore
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BTW
Takes on news of the day.
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Letters to the Editor
Readers' thoughts.
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  LET US celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the American Psychiatric Association’s decision to delist “homosexuality” as a mental illness in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM). This is the bible for psychiatric theory and practice, the arbiter of what is “normal” and what is pathological, so the inclusion of homosexuality was a constant dragMore
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How Dobbs v. Jackson Imperils LGBT Rights
  LGBT RIGHTS and abortion rights orbited separately for decades around the Constitution, never quite coming into direct contact. The Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson puts them on the same constitutional page. Although Dobbs concerns itself with abortion, the decision seriously menaces LGBT rights. The concurring opinion by Clarence Thomas explicitly calls on the courtMore
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