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         Assimilation into a dominant mainstream has always been a thorny issue for minority groups seeking acceptance. It would be cranky to begrudge the millions of gay men and lesbians who have joyfully embraced mainstream values and norms, even at the cost of jettisoning aspects of their lives that don’t fit the mold. But thereMore
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Roman Holiday
Michael Mewshaw’s memoir of Gore Vidal opens like The Rocky Horror Picture Show: an innocent young couple in a vehicle are about to meet someone monstrous. Only in this case it’s not Doctor Frank N. Furter; it’s “Gore Vidal,” Mewshaw thinks as he sits on the cross-town bus in Rome, “renowned for his acerbic witMore
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America through a Gay Glass, Darkly
Kramer is making the case that America from earliest times foreshadowed its response to AIDS, and indeed facilitated the development of AIDS.
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  What follows is the introduction to a forthcoming collection of Doug Ireland’s essays, edited by the author of this piece, titled The Emperor Has No Clothes: Doug Ireland’s Radical Voice (Boerum Hill). The book is available at www.Amazon.com.  Who was Doug Ireland, and why is he held in esteemed memory?  Martin Duberman’s latest bookMore
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  The audacious French theater director André Antoine felt compelled to write to an author whose play he had accepted for production that he would have to cancel the performance. “Your play, which might possibly be performed among intimates, is not playable to a public audience,” he explained on May 26, 1891. At the read-through,More
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Before There Was Mapplethorpe
Philip Gefter, photo editor, journalist, and film producer, has produced a book that makes the case for Wagstaff’s importance in elevating photography from its inferior critical and market position in the art world.
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Vanessa and Her Sister by Priya Parmar Ballantine Books. 350 pages, $26.   The descendants of the original members of the Bloomsbury Group—a name taken from the neighborhood in which they lived, not coined until the 1960s—are very much among us. Earlier this year, Van Gogh: A Power Seething, by Julian Bell, a painter andMore
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Short Reviews
Reviews of Framed Butterflies by Raad Rahman, and Matthew Connor’s album Farewell Motel.
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It’s Not About the Music
Three albums, 1977’s Low and Heroes, followed by Lodger in 1979, remain essential listening not only because the songs range from the instrumentally gothic “Warsawza” to the crowd-pleasing “Heroes,” but also because they anticipate the ’80s, when Bowie would reinvent himself once more as the poperatic singer of “Modern Love” and “Let’s Dance.”
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Visceral Reactions
I’m Already Disturbed Please Come In: Parasites, Social Media and Other Planetary Disturbances(A Memoir, of Sorts)by Gabrielle GlancyOneiric Press. 192 pages, $16.95    To begin with, the disturbances that rock the author’s life in this lively, offbeat sort-of memoir are not by any stretch planetary—except perhaps in the narrow sense of being wandering or erratic.More
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The Bisexual’s Dilemma
Fire Shut Up in My Bonesby Charles BlowHoughton Mifflin.  240 pages, $27.   The American Dream is not one but rather a kaleidoscope of dreams; this is the rural Southern version. Charles Blow’s life to date can be comfortably divided into two roughly equal parts. The first half, the subject of this memoir, was passedMore
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Song of a Social Butterfly
Justin Martin, the author of Rebel Souls: Walt Whitman and America’s First Bohemians, is clearly a man of eclectic interests, having previously written biographies of Frederick Law Olmsted, Ralph Nader, and Alan Greenspan. He has now turned his attention to the biography of an entire group.
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  Miranda’s Book by Alfred Corn Eyewear Publishing. 323 pages, $20.   You’ve made a killing. Going with your lover to retrieve a portfolio of art, you somehow manage to bring about the death of someone you dislike, someone the reader will no doubt dislike. What do you do? Call 911, or head out withMore
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Twilight of the Belle Époque: The Paris of Picasso, Stravinsky, Proust, Renault, Marie Curie, Gertrude Stein, and Their Friends through the Great War by Mary McAuliffe Rowman & Littlefield.  418 pages, $29.95   Few periods in French history are as glittering and vibrant as the Belle Époque, the prosperous decades of peace between France’s ignominious defeat in theMore
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Mark Merlis has written a deeply satisfying novel, one whose voices continue to echo in your head long after you’ve finished reading it.
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LGBT History 101
Part One begins with an essay by John D’Emilio, one of the most distinguished scholars of LGBT history in America. 
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Does Marriage Matter?
One of the old saws directed against marriage has always been that it leads to the loss of a person’s identity. Another is that it perpetuates traditional patriarchal values that many find repugnant. But, …
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The Truman Show
The great virtue of Truman Capote: A Literary Life at the Movies is its comprehensiveness. Pugh, a medievalist who also writes on film, details the many cinematic and televised adaptations of Capote’s novels and short stories, several of which have been filmed two or three times.
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“A camera is like a typewriter, in the sense in which you can use the machine to write a love letter, a book, or a business memo,” the photographer Duane Michals said in a 2001 interview with Italian critic Enrica Viganò, which is reproduced in Storyteller: The Photographs of Duane Michals.
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Tune In, Drop Out
Radiomenby Eleanor LermanThe Permanent Press. 288 pages, $11.99   Eleanor Lerman’s first book of poetry, Armed Love, published when she was 21, was a finalist for the 1973 National Book Award. The New York Times described the book as “X-rated” for its explicit explorations of sexuality and gender. After publishing a second book in 1975,More
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  James Baldwin came alive as never before in Karen Thorsen’s documentary James Baldwin: The Price Of The Ticket, first released in 1990 and rereleased on its 25th anniversary in a newly restored print. Doubly enhanced by the collaboration of the late Maya Angelou, who provided live readings of Baldwin’s work and acted as scholar–advisor forMore
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Jamie Brickhouse Remembers Mama
“You a bitch or whore?” asks Jamie Brickhouse with a mischievous grin from across the lacquered coffee table in his trendy Chelsea flat in New York City. With his copper hair, black sweater, purple shirt, and indigo plaid trousers, it’s clear the author of the new book Dangerous When Wet (St. Martin’s Press) is accustomedMore
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BTW
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Readers’ Thoughts
  Those Not Gay Husbands To the Editor:          Commenting on your “BTW” squib about the TLC show, My Husband’s Not Gay [March-April issue], I finally watched the show on my DVR. I was surprised at how open these guys were about their gayness. I thought it was refreshing to see someone try to liveMore
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Therapists: Declare ‘Ex-Gay Therapy’ Unethical
  Last December, Leelah Alcorn, a seventeen-year-old transgender girl, committed suicide by walking in front of a tractor-trailer in Ohio. Before her death, she blogged that she would rather die than be forced to continue “conversion therapy.” Her suicide moved hundreds of thousands of people to sign on-line petitions against conversion therapy, also known asMore
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  Malcolm Boyd, an ordained Episcopal priest and the author of two dozen books on matters of religion and gay rights and their intersection, died earlier this year at the age of 91. He received full obituaries in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, among other papers; what follows is a personal reflectionMore
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  Not long ago, I wrote in these pages about issues facing the Bangladesh GLBT community (“Activism Struggling to be Born,” Nov.-Dec. 2013), having worked there for many years. When I returned to the UK last year, I wondered how much British Asians identified with these problems and what others they have to deal with.More
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RYAN CONRAD is an artist, activist, and scholar whose politics challenge what he sees as assimilationist tendencies in the mainstream GLBT movement. He’s also the co-founder of Against Equality (AE), a collective of GLBT activists, and editor of their recently published book, Against Equality: Queer Revolution, Not Mere Inclusion. Conrad has contributed to scholarly and activistMore
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