Browsing: Another Country

July – August, 2010

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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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: Good Lesbian Travel Writing echoes that of an earlier anthology published by the University of Wisconsin Press, Wonderlands: Good Gay Travel Writing (2004). Editor Raphael Kadushin explained in his introduction that he used “good” because he was tired of every other damn collection’s claim to be the “best” writing—which is logically impossible, after all. I admired his reasoning but avoided repeating his explanation in my own introduction—hence, the questions. Meanwhile, I’d like to address the other questions that the four-word subtitle has raised.

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The Pride
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PART OF a spate of gay-themed plays on the boards in New York this season, two from Off-Broadway present contrasting approaches to the recent history of same-sex male love. The Temperamentals by Jon Marans dramatizes early activism: the creation in Los Angeles of the Mattachine Society by Communist organizer Harry Hay and his then lover, costume designer Rudi Gernreich, and a small circle of friends. The story unfolds in the early 1950’s with America moving from the war years into the McCarthy Era. The Pride, on the other hand, a first play by Alexi Kaye Campbell, is a British import that views the gay present through the lens of the past. It features two different male couples in London in 1958 and 2008; each pair must come to terms with the personal price of gay relations. In 1958, the context is one of social repression; in 2008, one of sexual and social liberation.

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