Browsing: Another Country

July – August, 2010

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WHAT’S WITH THE “GOOD” in the subtitle of your book? people ask me. Couldn’t you get the “best” writing? or (tongue in cheek) is it writing by “good lesbians”? The subtitle of Something to Declare echoes that of an earlier anthology, Wonderlands: Good Gay Travel Writing.

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“PARIS IS WHERE the 20th century was,” declared that eccentric raconteur and occasional aphorist, Gertrude Stein. Writers like Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and Stein herself, artists like Picasso, Dalí, and…More

The Silver Hearted by David McConnell
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THIS IS a strange and marvelous bird of a novel. On its surface, The Silver Hearted is an adventure story that convincingly channels the classics of that genre. A layer below the surface ripples a sharp critique of colonial and post-colonial themes that go further than Conrad or Forster could have done.

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Cotton's Queer Relations: Same-Sex Intimacy and the Literature of the Southern Plantation, 1936-1968 by Michael P. Bibler
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WITH THIS BOOK, Michael P. Bibler proposes to show that several works of 20th-century American fiction set on what he calls the Southern “meta-plantation” use same-sex relationships to undermine “the vertical system of paternalistic and patriarchal hierarchies that constitutes the core social structure of every individual plantation.”

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Homophobias: Lust and Loathing across Time and Space by David A. B. Murray
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IN THIS TWO-PART COLLECTION of nine essays, editor David A. B. Murray successfully illuminates what one contributor, Don Kulick, refers to as “the history of homophobic values,” exposing how the universality of homophobia manifests and disseminates itself in heterosexist systems and becomes institutionalized. Each contributor offers a unique take on how anti-gay rhetoric and images of hegemonic privilege develop through a myriad of political, economic, and linguistic instrumentalities.

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BOGOTÁ COULD BE the next big destination for GLBT travelers and transplants, along with some other cities in Colombia. In this capital city of some eight million souls, there are an estimated 500,000 that belong to the GLBT community. With these kinds of numbers, the gay population of Bogotá has not been ignored by local politicians and business people.

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Pop: The Genius of Andy Warhol by Tony Scherman and David Dalton
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IN THE PAST TWO YEARS, at least two dozen books about Warhol’s life, career, and work have been produced. Is there anything new to say? Tony Scherman and David Dalton’s Pop is an entirely new take on Warhol and his world.

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Over two months later, this quiet event was recapitulated in a public way in Israel. I was speaking to a crowd of Israeli men at the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation in Tel Aviv, when the subject became gays in Lebanon. “We’ve heard there is better nightlife there than here,” one man asked, wanting to know about the bars and clubs. The comment shocked some of those in the audience. Beirut was as forbidden to him as Tel Aviv was to Khaled. All the men in the room suddenly leaned forward in attention, wondering what the Lebanese capital, once the Middle East’s most cosmopolitan city, would be like.

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Brief Lives: E. M. Forster by Richard Canning
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Reviews of The Scandal of Susan Sontag, and Brief Lives: E. M. Forster.

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