Browsing: Eros and God

November – December, 2007

Blog Posts

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WHEN GEORGE JORGENSEN became a woman and renamed herself Christine some fifty years ago, she made headlines around the world. Richard F. Docter sat next to Jorgensen by chance at a banquet one evening several years ago, and since he’s a behavioral psychologist, he wanted to get some idea of how Jorgensen felt about modern transsexuals and cross-dressers. The result is a new biography, Becoming a Woman: A Biography of Christine Jorgensen …

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Short reviews of Parthian Stations, Blackbird and Wolf: Poems, The Late Show, and My Body.

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REVERED as one of the greatest actors of our times, Sir Ian Murray McKellen never felt he was doing his best work until he came out publicly at the age of 49. A private man who considered it nobody’s business what his sexual orientation was, McKellen kept mum about it until 1988 …

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SCOTTI HOUSE, the heroine of Vin Packer’s new novel, is a male-to-female (MTF) transsexual, a pre-op whose metamorphosis is fraught with difficulty. In another life she’d earned a PhD from Princeton and worked as a writer and teacher.

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IN MAY OF 1928, Christopher Isherwood made his first trip to Germany. He went as a tourist on a brief visit to the port city of Bremen. Though unremarkable in many respects, this trip would prove to be amazingly generative. For the reading public, the visit was a catalyst that would eventually result in some of the most entertaining writing to come out of the 1930’s.

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CHINA’S VERTIGINOUS RISE as a global economic player is being watched with fascination by those who once dismissed China as a moribund Communist state. This change in perception has triggered an urgent need in the West for the production of knowledge about the country. Over fifty scholarly books have been published since 1990, and several more are forthcoming. Lisa Rofel’s collection of essays entitled Desiring China is the latest offering to a world eager to make sense of this “inscrutable” nation.

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Despite how trapped I was by the various ideologies of the academy, I was also claiming my gay identity for the first time, and I began to see that I could think for myself, if only a little. I started to feel that Mary Shelley’s epic possessed a better-and by far a gayer-grasp on the supernatural than that of her “superiors.”

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IN 1976, Jonathan Katz published one of the first comprehensive histories of same-sex sexuality in the United States. His Gay American History: Lesbians and Gay Men in the U.S.A. is credited with legitimating gay history as a viable subject for academic inquiry and providing a necessary starting point for this emerging field of study. Long Before Stonewall: Histories of Same-Sex Sexuality in Early America, contributes to and complicates this field considerably.

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