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16 Brilliant Bi and Lesbian Literary Fiction Novels to Keep You Thinking – The Lesbrary

Marieke reviews This Is How You Lose The Time War

Bi and Lesbian Literary Fiction to Keep You Thinking graphic

When I say that I read mostly bi and lesbian literature, people often assume that means F/F romance. Although I like the occasional romance novel, the truth is that it makes up very little of my reading life. There are sapphic books in every genre: science fiction, fantasy, mystery, nonfiction, etc. One of the genres I gravitate towards is bi and lesbian literary fiction—which is a tricky thing to describe. What makes a book literary fiction? Well, usually it is more character-driven than plot-driven. It may deal with “big ideas” and concentrate more on questions than on action. It’s often seen as complex and “well-written”—but all of these qualities are subjective. I’m not interested in getting a perfect definition. Instead, I want to offer some book recommendations that will likely appeal to you if you read books that are marketed as “literary fiction.”

This is in no way a complete list of every bi and lesbian literary fiction book out there. They’re just some of my favorites. To simplify, I decided to leave out the “classics” of lesbian literature: The Well of Loneliness, The Color Purple, Rubyfruit Jungle, and other books published in the early days of queer lit. These are not all recent releases, but they are biased towards books that have come out in the last decade or two. Did your favorites make the list?

The Last Nude by Ellis AveryThe Last Nude by Ellis Avery

This is historical fiction based on Tamara de Lempicka, and it made me fall in love with Ellis Avery as an author and Tamara de Lempicka as an artist. It’s about the artist’s relationship with one of her models, Rafaela, who was the inspiration for six paintings. It’s beautiful and melancholy, and completely pulls you into 1920s Paris. It will make you think about art, doomed romance, discovering your sexuality, our relationships to our bodies, queer history, and the nature of betrayal.

In Another Place, Not Here by Dionne BrandIn Another Place, Not Here by Dionne Brand

This is about two women in Trinidad: one a sugar cane worker, another an activist attempting to unionize the workers. They are immediately drawn to each other, but their relationship is threatened by outside forces, including racism and homophobia. This book will make you think about belonging, and feeling caught between (and left outside of) two communities. It will make you think about immigration, and what it means to be “illegal,” about justice and belonging, and about individual choices in an unjust system.

My Education by Susan ChoiMy Education by Susan Choi

This books at first glance seems to be the very stereotype of a literary novel: a young university student begins taking classes with a professor rumored to sleep with his students. They begin sleeping together. When Regina meets his wife, however, she is far more interested in her—and that’s the dynamic at the heart of this novel. This book will make you think about trainwreck relationships—the kind you can’t quite resist, about flawed main characters, and about the mistakes you make in early adulthood.

Miss Timmins' School for Girls by Nayana CurrimbhoyMiss Timmins’ School for Girls by Nayana Currimbhoy

This is an atmospheric, absorbing book about teaching at a boarding school in India in the 1970s during the monsoon season. Sheltered Charulata is only a handful of years older than the students, but she changes quickly, especially when she has two sordid, tragic love affairs (one male partner, one female). Then a student turns up dead, and the mystery element begins. This will make you think about coming of age and discovering your own identity.

Patsy by Nicole Dennis-BennPatsy by Nicole Dennis-Benn

Patsy has just taken her chance to move to the U.S., leaving her small Jamaican hometown behind—as well as her 5-year-old daughter. Patsy follows the main character and her daughter over years, and how they both reconcile with this decision, and what it means for their relationship. It will leave you thinking about family, independence and interdependence, gender, and sexuality. Be sure to also check out her previous novel, Here Comes the Sun.

The Pull of the Stars by Emma DonoghueThe Pull of the Stars by Emma Donoghue

This title is standing in for a lot of Donoghue books: she’s one of the big names in lesbian literary fiction. The Pull of the Stars is set during the 1918 pandemic in a small hospital ward, which is either exactly what you want to read right now, or exactly the opposite. It will leave you thinking about the parallels between that pandemic and ours, about justice in healthcare, pregnancy and childbirth, and motherhood.

The Salt Roads by Nalo HopkinsonThe Salt Roads by Nalo Hopkinson

This book is an experience. It follows three women in different countries and time periods: Mer in 18th century Haiti, Jeanne in 1880s France, and Meritet in ancient Alexandria. Binding the three together is the spirit Ezili, who inhabits each of them at different times. This book has an F/F sex scene in the first 15 pages, and let me tell you, when I was assigned this in university, I was not expecting that. This book will leave you thinking about freedom and oppression, what’s worth sacrificing, misogyny and racism throughout time, sexuality, spirituality, the beauty of language, and so much more.

when fox is a thousand by larissa laiWhen Fox is a Thousand by Larissa Lai

This is told in three perspectives: the eponymous fox, counting down until her thousandth birthday when she will acquire power and knowledge; Yu Hsuan-Chi, a real-life poetess from 9th century China; and Artemis, a young woman in modern-day Vancouver. This is told like folklore, with fables woven throughout. It’s beautifully written, I firmly believe it should be considered a classic of lesbian literary fiction. This will make you think about toxic friendships, about activism uninformed by compassion and respect, and about queering folklore.

Her Body and Other Parties Carmen Maria Machado coverHer Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado

This is a beautiful and unsettling collection that takes familiar stories and exposes the misogyny beneath them. They are thoughtful, metaphorical stories: women who fade away until they are imbued into objects, lists of lovers that turn into a dystopian narrative, and urban legends transformed. Read this to think about gender, stereotypes (a writer is accused of writing a stereotype, and she explains that she’s writing about herself—her gay, anxious self), folklore, feminism, and more.

The Summer We Got Free by Mia MckenzieThe Summer We Got Free by Mia Mckenzie

This book feels like the moment before a summer thunderstorm. It’s about a family dealing with the fallout from a tragedy they can’t bare to talk about. We alternate between Ava’s childhood, when she was free-spirited and passionate, and her closed-off, practical adult self. Read this to think about race and racism (particularly anti-Black racism), societal norms, growing up, family secrets, and the possibility of kissing a strange woman who shows up at your doorstop.

Cereus Blooms at Night by Shani Mootoo

Mala is sent to Paradise Alms House after she is declared unfit to stand trial for suspected murder. Slowly, she begins to unravel her life story to her nurse, Tyler (a gender-nonconforming person of indeterminate gender). Two queer love stories emerge: one in Mala’s past, one with Tyler. This story will make you think about homophobia, racism, and the intersections between them; about inter-generational queerness; and about hope.

Under the Udala Trees by Chinelo OkparantaUnder the Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta

This story is about two star-crossed lovers in Nigeria: they’re both girls, and from different ethnic communities. They are thrown together during civil war—but this is not a romance, and they are torn apart. Ijeoma has to learn what do about this part of herself that has to be hidden for her safety and acceptance. Read this to think about the the dangers of being out in different places around the world, to consider how much is worth sacrificing to be your whole self, and how these impossible choices may change over time.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins ReidThe Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Monique is shocked when Evelyn Hugo picks her to pen her biography: Hugo is an aging starlet whose biography is sure to be a bestseller, and Monique is an unknown writer with some magazine credits. Still, she takes the opportunity, and listens to Hugo unravel her life story, which reveals how she stayed closeted about her sexuality (bisexual) and ethnicity (Latina). Read this to think about the cost of fame, bi-erasure, complex female characters, racism, and 1950s Hollywood.

Everfair by Nisi ShawlEverfair by Nisi Shawl

You might find this in the sci-fi/fantasy section, but this is more alternate history than steampunk. It’s a reimagining of the colonial history of the Republic of Congo, and also follows a tumultuous, decades-long relationship between two women of very different backgrounds. Read this to think about colonialism, racism, white “passing,” complicated F/F relationships, intersectionality, war, and the story structure of including a staggering amount of point of view characters.

Tipping the Velvet by Sarah WatersTipping the Velvet by Sarah Waters

Sarah Waters is my favorite author, so this is a stand-in for all of her books, but I especially recommend picking up Fingersmith, too. Tipping the Velvet is a “lesbo-Victorian romp” (that’s the author’s description) about a small-town girl falling for a male impersonator and joining her on the road. Read it to think about being queer in Victorian England, male impersonators and gender, first loves, socialism, relationships that develop from friendships, and love after loss.

Written on the Body by Jeanette WintersonWritten on the Body by Jeanette Winterson

Jeanette Winterson is one of the big names in lesbian literary fiction, so there are a lot of her books I could have included, but I especially recommend this and The PassionWritten on the Body is remarkable for not stating the gender of the protagonist explicitly at any point, but it’s generally regarded as a classic of lesbian literary fiction. It’s about the narrator’s adoration of Louise, a married woman, and singing the praises of her and her body. Read this to think about gender assumptions and signifiers, and about being passionately in all-consuming love.

Bonus book:

This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max GladstoneThis Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

Okay, you’ll almost certainly find it in the science fiction section: it’s about two women on opposite sides of a war across space and time, leaving each other letters—at first taunting, and then romantic. The letters between Red and Blue are so beautiful and lyrical that you’ll forgive me for including it on this list. Read this to think about poetry and love letters, war and time travel, and recognizing the humanity of people we’ve been taught to dehumanize.

Those are my picks for bi and lesbian literary fiction that will leave you with much to ponder! This is only a brief introduction: there are many more sapphic literary works, and more are being published all the time. If you pick up any of these, let me know what you think on Twitter! I’d love to hear what you think. Feel free to also offer any recommendations of bi and lesbian literary fiction you think I’d enjoy! I’m always looking for more.

This article originally ran on Book Riot.

Parched – Lesbian.com

Parched – Lesbian.com

Available in USA only.

PARCHED is an inspirational drama about women set in the heart of parched rural landscape of Gujarat, India. It traces the bittersweet tale of four ordinary women: traditional Rani, a young widow; lively Lajjo, who lives in an abusive marriage; outcast Bijli, a dancer and prostitute who becomes friends with Rani and Lajjo; and Janaki, a young teenager in a miserable arranged marriage to Rani’s son Gulab.

We see the friends unapologetically talk about men, sex and life as they struggle with their individual boundaries and their inner demons. Gradually, they begin question the century-old traditions that have kept them locked in servitude. One fateful night, the women come together and take a bold step that will change the trajectory of their lives.

Shot by Academy Award-winning cinematographer, Russell Carpenter (TITANIC).

*Please note: This title is not specifically lesbian, but an amazing story of women finding empowerment through their bonds with each other. We know you will enjoy it.

“A burning source of inspiration to oppressed women everywhere. . . filmmaking heroism at its most effective.” – AwardsCircuit.com

“Leena Yadav weaves a few humorous, heartbreaking and bewitching tales into an insightful, entertaining, award-winning film.” – Moviemaker Magazine

“Should resonate with audiences worldwide.”  – Variety

“One of the most honest, uncompromising portrayals of female friendship I’ve ever seen on screen.” – Broadly

WINNER
Director’s Award – Foreign Language Film, Cinetopia Film Festival, Michigan

WINNER
Audience Award for Best Film, Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles

WINNER
Grand Jury Award for Best Actress:
The cast of PARCHED: Tannishtha Chatterjee, Radhika Apte,
Surveen Chawla, and Lehar Khan
Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles

WINNER
Impact Award, Stockholm Film Festival

Make A Wish – Lesbian.com

Make A Wish – Lesbian.com

Who’s Next?!

Erotic tension prevails when five very attractive lesbians (and one bisexual) go on their annual camping trip. Buff leading actress Moynan King (Mrs. Stevens Hears the Mermaids Singing, Queer As Folk) stars as Susan, the birthday girl who invites all her ex-girlfriends to join her for a weekend in the wild. But one by one someone is bumping them off — in classic slasher fashion! The women include: boyishly beautiful Monica and her girlfriend Andrea; knockout blonde bisexual Linda, Wiccan womon Dawn and militant vegetarian Chloe.

“In the time-tested slasher tradition, there’s room between murders for topless makeout scenes.” – Variety

“If anyone can think of a better set-up for a horror film than lesbian ex-lovers camping in Texas, I’ll pay to hear it.” – FAB Magazine

“In the spirit of Friday the 13th, one by one the lesbians get the chop. First time filmmaker Ferranti creates fever pitch psycho-sexual tension, with lots of self deprecating humor thrown in. It’s about time we got our very own lesbian slasher!” –  London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival

Official Selection at LGBT Film Festivals across North America: Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Toronto, Fire Island, Montreal, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Austin, Kansas City, Philadelphia, and many more!

Tags: Hollace Starr, Lava Alapai, lesbian, lesbian movies, Lesbian.com, LGBT, LGBT film, make a wish, Moynan King, sharon ferranti, Virginia Baeta, Wolfe Video

Posted & filed under Movies.

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Hoping I can post my own fanart on this page…. anyway, She-ra has made such an impact on me. I grew up in a world where stories never represented me. : actuallesbians

Hoping I can post my own fanart on this page....

A place for discussions for and by cis and trans lesbians, bisexual girls, chicks who like chicks, bi-curious folks, dykes, butches, femmes, girls who kiss girls, birls, bois, aces, LGBT allies, and anyone else interested! Our subreddit is named r/actuallesbians because r/lesbians is not really for or by lesbians–it was meant to be a joke. We’re not a militant or exclusive group, so feel free to join up!

Visiting Slovenia’s Lake Bled in the Winter – Our Taste for Life

Lake Bled, Slovenia - Our Taste for Life

Lake Bled, Slovenia - Our Taste for Life

Visiting Lake Bled in Winter is an excellent idea, but there are some things you should be aware of when visiting out of season. Thankfully, we spent a few days in Bled last December, so we can share what we got up to and what we consider to be the best Lake Bled winter activities. We’ll also include recommendations on where to eat and where to sleep, as well as all of our top tips for visiting this enchanting location in Slovenia.

No Slovenia itinerary is complete without a visit to Bled. The charming alpine town looks like it’s landed straight out of a storybook, with the pinnacle being the astonishing Bled Lake. Encompassed by the Julian Alps, I’d confidently say the lake is one of the most picturesque in the world. Arguably even more so during winter, when the mountains are snow-capped and glorious.

Regardless of whether you visit Bled in Winter or Summer, there are tons of exciting things to do and look forward to. The winter months are equally, if not more, adventurous with activities such as skiing, hiking, and ice-skating, to name but a few. Then, of course, there are the December Christmas markets when it is totally acceptable to drink copious amounts of mulled wine. Need I say any more?

Anyhow, we have a lot to get through, so let’s get to it. Here’s a comprehensive guide to visiting Slovenia’s Lake Bled in Winter.

Why Visit Lake Bled in Winter?

If snow-capped mountains and mulled wine didn’t already convince you, then honestly, I don’t know what will.

But no, in all seriousness, I understand why some would have reservations planning a Winter trip to Bled. Or anywhere in Europe for that matter. Let’s face it; the weather is cold and unpredictable, putting your valuable sightseeing time at risk. But what if I told you there are a lot of positives to travelling offseason? Don’t believe me? Well, allow me to change your mind.

Full Story at Our Taste for Life

Slovenia Gay Travel Resources

Extra! Extra!: Everything Not the Election It’s Been Hard to Keep Up with

Extra! Extra!: Everything Not the Election It's Been Hard to

With less than two weeks to go until the presidential election, I find myself losing sight of all the many other things going on in the world. I’m sure many people feel this way as well. This week’s Extra! Extra! looks at a whole slew of non-election related news, including LGBTQ+ rights and the trifecta of global pandemics: police violence, climate change and COVID-19. And then, of course, we do take a look at election-related news too.

LGBTQ+ Issues

In Shift for Church, Pope Francis Voices Support for Same-Sex Civil Unions

Rachel: I’ve been thinking all week about how to feel about this as a cultural/lapsed Catholic. On the one hand I think even this (ultimately abstract, as it doesn’t amount to a shift in dogma or Catholic theology) gesture will make a genuine difference for many queer folks growing up in Catholic-practicing families and communities, as families and loved ones may genuinely revisit their stances; on the other hand, the Vatican still went out of their way to state as recently as 2019 that the existence of trans people “annihilates the concept of nature”. On yet another hand, this is absurdly too little too late – it’s 2020! Civil unions??? – and ultimately, regardless of theological beliefs, the Vatican as an institution is an inherently oppressive and colonial one; symbolic tolerance of LGBTQ folks is… not liberatory, really. This thought does not have a resolution! I would very much like to hear from other LGBTQ Catholics and folks historically colonized by Catholic empires.

Texas social workers can now turn away LGBTQ, disabled clients

Himani: People keep talking about how Texas is turning purple. That may very well be true but as long as Greg Abbott is governor, it seems like state-driven policies in Texas will remain a deep shade of red. Earlier this year, we saw how Abbott used the governorship to try to undermine police reform in Austin. Now he’s at it again by “recommending” to the state’s Board of Social Worker Examiners to remove the civil rights protections for queer, trans and disabled people. And, unlike the city of Austin — which stood by its police budget cut — the Board caved to this pressure from the governor. The ramifications of this decision are clear.

Barrett was trustee at private school with anti-gay policies

Himani: Yes, this article is about Amy Coney Barrett’s deeply homophobic views, but also let’s talk about private schools for a hot minute. As per this AP article: “the school’s and organization’s teachings on homosexuality and treatment of LGBTQ people are harsher than those of the mainstream Catholic church” — which, given Rachel’s comments earlier, is a pretty low bar… This is a school that told a gay student to tell a lesbian parent of prospective student that they would have no place in the school, and that this applied to trans and queer families and students on the whole. The school has enshrined the notion of marriage being solely between a man and woman, prevented children from LGBTQ+ families from enrolling, itself bullied its own LGBTQ+ students, … the list goes on and on.

And yet, as the AP article continues, “The actions are probably legal, experts said.”

This is a private school that has received taxpayer money in the form of vouchers. And this is among the many, many reasons why the policy shift towards “school choice” is such a terrible, terrible idea. There’s a long list of other reasons why it’s bad, but tax-payer funded discrimination is pretty high up there.

Police Violence, the World Over

Himani: Police violence was at the forefront of the American conscience this summer. But police violence is, truly, a global problem. Right across the border, Canada is grappling with some of the same issues as the U.S. in terms of the wide latitude it gives to law enforcement and the deadly consequences of that. An ocean away, Nigerians have taken to the streets over that very issue. Over in the Philippines, Duterte is obstinately justifying the thousands upon thousands of extrajudicial killings that have happened at the hands of the police on his watch. In Belarus, police are violently suppressing protests as people demand their right to free and fair elections, much like we saw in Portland earlier this summer and witnessed in Nigeria this week as well. A similar situation is playing out in Thailand, but just today it seems like the government is responding to the pressure from pro-democracy protests. These are just a few instances of police violence that have made the news the past couple of weeks.

Police Were Warned About No-Knock Warrants. Now, a Black Man Is Dead

Tens of Thousands March in Belarus Despite Police Threat to Open Fire

Thailand’s Prime Minister lifts state of emergency. Protesters give him three days to resign

‘I’m the one’: Philippines president takes responsibility for drug killings

Federal Agents Used Toxic Chemical Smoke Grenades in Portland

Climate Change and Racism Go Hand in Hand

Himani: From the beginning, climate change and racism have been close bedfellows. For centuries, white, Western colonials prioritized their own (short-term) prosperity at the expense of indigenous people and the environment. And those patterns continue. The oil tycoons and land developers and big agricultural corporations know the environmental consequences of their actions. But they don’t care because they don’t have to live with them in the present and won’t have to deal with them in the future. And when some of the effects of climate change start to be felt by those in power, they turn to their two favorite approaches: cultural appropriation and trading in one problem for another.

The great hypocrisy of California using Indigenous practices to curb wildfires

Knock on Wood: How Europe’s wood pellet appetite fuels environmental racism in the South

This is my message to the western world – your civilisation is killing life on Earth

COVID-19 Update

‘Drastic rise’ in Malawi’s suicide rate linked to Covid economic downturn

Himani: It’s such a horrible bind we’ve put ourselves in the world over. The only safe way to exist, to try to fight the virus is to shut down economies. But shutting down economies leads to devastating consequences for the poorest people in society. In Malawi, where half the country lives below the poverty line, this has resulted in a sharp increase in suicides. If only, we as a global community, structured our societies differently. If only we did not endlessly chase after dollars, as Rachel notes below, as well. A pandemic might still have wreaked havoc in the world but perhaps not quite as much death, destruction and devastation.

8 Million Have Slipped Into Poverty Since May as Federal Aid Has Dried Up

Rachel: There’s been a lot of (rightful) criticism of the passive voice here – people didn’t “slip” into poverty, as a happenstance, but were thrust into it by the government. Similarly, ‘dried up’ is some very careful phrasing; federal aid was actively denied to us despite calls for it; aid that was actually meant for small business was instead reallocated in bulk to corporations; many businesses that did receive aid weren’t actually beholden to use it to pay workers. All those points are crucially important; I’m also thinking of this news in light of the development just yesterday that GoFundMe has expanded its own relief program in the form of Causes, which include Covid-19 relief. It’s too kind to say it’s a farce – not only has the government abjectly refused to care for its people, but in doing so has created a vacuum that allows a private company to step in and make a profit just by facilitating other private citizens trying to keep each other alive. The invisible hand of the market, I guess!

California kept prison factories open. Inmates worked for pennies an hour as COVID-19 spread

On Elections, in America and Beyond

Himani: As the world anxiously awaits the results of the upcoming U.S. election, let’s take a look at a few other political situations around the world.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern wins historic reelection

Himani: Ardern has been widely praised for her handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and that played a big role in her successful re-election. In a world of populist (essentially) dictators winning landslides and becoming even more authoritarian, this is such a breath of fresh air. I can’t wait to see what she’ll do in her next term.

The remarkable power of African elections

Himani: This article was a sobering reminder that even when democracy is suppressed to the point of no longer being anything even close to democracy, elections still serve a purpose. I’ve thought about this a lot when I think about the work Alexey Navalny has done for years in Russia. As Americans grow increasingly jaded with our own electoral process, this would be a lesson we would do well to learn.

Less Than Two Weeks Out : Let’s Talk about the Issues

The Swamp that Trump Built

The Neo-Imperialist’s Burden

The Dystopian Police State the Trump Administration Wants

Lawyers say they can’t find the parents of 545 migrant children separated by Trump administration

What to Expect on November 3

We’re Living in the Shadows of a Bush v. Gore 2.0

Himani: I was in seventh grade when Bush v. Gore happened, and it literally disillusioned me on American democracy for the rest of my life. The 2016 election was absolutely devastating for me and others for so, so many reasons. And this. This is my absolute worst nightmare that I am very, very much afraid will be our reality.

How to Survive Election Night

Rachel: This isn’t political analysis, but my therapist also brought up this week how many of her clients are making or should make election night preparedness plans about how they’re going to spend the evening regardless of outcome and make sure they’re as well-resourced and cared for as possible. I think this is a great idea and would encourage it for you also! Are there folks you can be with, digitally if not in person? If you do want to get updates, what are sources you trust and share values with that you can get those updates from, and how can you turn off access to the other sources? Would it be a good idea (and possible) to take off work or other obligations the next day? Do you have plans for ways to get involved in making your communities healthier and safer through and beyond the election regardless of outcome? We’re here for you now, and will be on election day too.


Extra! Extra! is on a biweekly schedule for the month of October. We’ll see you in two weeks! (Yes, after the election…)

Jules of Light and Dark – Lesbian.com

Jules of Light and Dark – Lesbian.com

In present-day Texas, Maya (Tallie Medel) and her on again, off again girlfriend Jules (Betsy Holt) total their car after a night of backwoods raving and teen mischief. They’re rescued from the wreckage by Freddy (Robert Longstreet), a divorced oil worker whose stoic facade crumbles as he comes to see himself, and his repressed desires, in Maya. As Jules recovers, Maya and Freddy develop a rapport that dulls the debilitating silence of their small-town lives. Together, they subtly encourage one another to chase after what they want the most (or at least figure out what that might be).

Defined by earnest, full performances and a blue palette, Daniel Laabs’ first feature solidly articulates the universality of queer loneliness and uncertainty across genders and generations.

Tags: betsy holt, Daniel laabs, Jules of light and dark, lesbian movies, Lesbian.com, LGBT, lgbt films, Robert Longstreet, tallie medel, wolfevideo

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People are seriously creeped by this weird photo of Matt Gaetz nestling Kimberly Guilfoyle’s bosom / Queerty

People are seriously creeped by this weird photo of Matt

People are seriously disturbed by a weird photo antigay Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida posted to his Twitter page this week.

Yesterday, Gaetz took a break from doing whatever the hell he does during the workday to tweet a picture of himself resting his head against the bosom of Kimberly “The Best Is Yet To Come” Guilfoyle, along with the caption: “I will never take a cooler picture than this.”

But judging by people’s responses, Gaetz is perhaps the only person in the world who thinks he looks supercool in the pic…

This isn’t the first time Gaetz has exercised poor judgement in the sorts of photographs he poses for.

In April, he received criticism after being pictured wearing a gas mask on the House floor in an effort to mock coronavirus. Days later, he entered self-quarantine after being exposed to the virus.

And in August, he received criticism after a selfie of him partying with “trysexual” Roger Stone and Joel Greenberg, the former Florida tax collector charged with sex trafficking, circulated on Twitter.

Related: Rep. Matt Gaetz ripped on live TV for mocking coronavirus with gas mask

San Francisco Seeks to Make Home of Lesbian Pioneers a Landmark

San Francisco Seeks to Make Home of Lesbian Pioneers a

The home where pioneering LGBTQ and civil rights activists Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin lived for more than five decades may become a local historic landmark, as the San Francisco Board of Supervisors has taken the first step towards giving it that designation. The two women may be best known as the first same-sex couple to marry legally in San Francisco, but the legacy of these mothers of our movement is bigger than that.

Martin and Lyon in their living room c. 1990s (courtesy GLBT Historical Society)

Martin and Lyon in their living room c. 1990s (courtesy GLBT Historical Society)

The home, where Martin and Lyon lived together from 1955 until Martin’s death in 2008, and where Lyon remained until her death, is a 750-square-foot cottage on a mostly undeveloped double lot in San Francisco’s Noe Valley neighborhood. The property sold for $2.25 million this September. The sale caught the attention of Shayne Watson, a historian who co-wrote San Francisco’s LGBTQ Historic Context Statement in 2016. “I was alarmed when I saw an article about the sale touting how profitable it would be to redevelop the property,” said Watson in a press statement. “The Lyon-Martin house is not only one of the most significant queer sites in the city, but a place of international importance—truly a birthplace of LGBTQ-rights movements worldwide.”

“The home of Lesbian icons and human rights leaders Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin in San Francisco is vital to LGBTQ as well as San Francisco and American history,” said Dr. Marcia Gallo, professor emerita at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and author of Different Daughters: A History of the Daughters of Bilitis and the Rise of the Lesbian Rights Movements. “From the mid-1950s to 2020, with its large open living room windows looking out on the city they loved so dearly, the Lyon Martin House not only sheltered them and their family and friends but also welcomed activists, journalists, politicians and other change-makers throughout the nation and the world.”

The neighborhood, however, has seen much recent redevelopment, with many older homes torn down to be replaced by new ones. Watson therefore brought together historians, friends and former caregivers of Lyon and Martin, and members of the broader queer community to establish Friends of the Lyon-Martin House in partnership with the GLBT Historical Society. After meeting with the group, Mandelman introduced a resolution in late September nominating the home as a historic landmark. On Tuesday, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to approve it. This begins a process in which the City’s Planning Department and Historic Preservation Commission has 90 days to issue a recommendation to the Board, which would then take final action to designate the landmark. That status would mean that future development and uses of the property would be subject to review by the Historic Preservation Commission.

In 1955, Martin and Lyon were among the eight founders of Daughters of Bilitis (DOB), the first political lesbian rights organization in the U.S. In 1956, the organization held the first known discussion groups on lesbian motherhood. The two worked tirelessly for decades on LGBTQ equality, women’s rights, stopping violence against women, healthcare access, advocacy for seniors, and much more. Martin founded or co-founded numerous other women’s and LGBT organizations, including the Lesbian Mother’s Union, the San Francisco Women’s Centers, the Bay Area Women’s Coalition, and the Council on Religion and the Homosexual in San Francisco. She and Lyon were the first lesbians to insist on joining the National Organization for Women (NOW) with a “couples’ membership rate” and Martin was the first out lesbian on its board of directors. Lesbian/Woman, the book they co-authored in 1972, was a groundbreaking portrayal of lesbian lives.

In 2004, Martin and Lyon were the first same-sex couple to be married by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom. They were plaintiffs in the case that won marriage equality for same-sex couples throughout California in 2008. Martin died in 2008, shortly after their legal marriage; Lyon died this past April. They are survived by a daughter, two grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.

Terry Beswick, executive director of the GLBT Historical Society, says on the Friends of the Lyon-Martin House website, “I can see it in the future being a destination as an archival site for GLBTQ rights and women’s rights here in San Francisco.”

Perhaps they’ll also have a gift shop with books by and about the couple and the LGBTQ equality movement. If so, it should include Gayle Pitman’s picture book When You Look Out the Window (Magination Press), which shows how the two women fell in love, bought a house, and worked to transform their community.


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“The Amazing Randi,” gay magician and paranormal debunker, dead at 92 / Queerty

“The Amazing Randi,” gay magician and paranormal debunker, dead at

James Randi. Via Wikimedia Commons

James Randi–better known by the moniker “The Amazing Randi”–has died. He was 92 years old.

Randi rose to fame thanks to his frequent appearances on The Tonight Show where he performed magic opposite Johnny Carson. Randi also gained a reputation as a master illusionist through appearances on other television programs, including one notable instance where he stayed underwater in a swimming pool sealed in a coffin for 104 minutes, beating the previous record held by Harry Houdini.

Related: Wherein Canadian Magician James Randi, 81, Comes Out

Later in his career, Randi became something of a psychic buster, duplicating the supposed miracles of faith healers and other paranormal gurus. Notably, Randi debunked the “healings” of German televangelist Peter Popoff in 1986. Popoff claimed to have received personal information about his congregants sent by God. Randi showed a video on The Tonight Show of Popoff doing just that…while his wife fed him details via a hidden radio transmitter. The congregation had filled out prayer cards prior to the incident, which Popoff’s wife used to provide her husband with the information. Randi also had a longtime rivalry with Israeli psychic Uri Geller. Randi managed to duplicate Geller’s signature feat of bending spoons, and in one notable Tonight Show appearance, blocked Geller from performing any magic at all.

James Randi came out as gay in 2010, having been moved by the film Milk and the ongoing fight over marriage equality. “I’m gay,” he wrote on his blog. “From some seventy years of personal experience, I can tell you that there’s not much ‘gay’ about being homosexual. For the first twenty years of my life, I had to live in the shadows, in a culture that was — at least outwardly — totally hostile to any hint of that variation of life-style. At no time did I choose to adopt any protective coloration, though; my cultivation of an abundant beard was not at all a deception, but part of my costume as a conjuror.”

He also revealed that he had been in a romantic relationship with his longtime assistant, Jose Alvarez, since 1986; the pair married in 2013.

Randi died of age-related causes October 20, 2020, having survived colorectal cancer and a stroke. For his contribution to entertainment–and to debunking charlatans–we will miss him.

🎨👯‍♀️🖤 : actuallesbians

🎨👯‍♀️🖤 : actuallesbians

A place for discussions for and by cis and trans lesbians, bisexual girls, chicks who like chicks, bi-curious folks, dykes, butches, femmes, girls who kiss girls, birls, bois, aces, LGBT allies, and anyone else interested! Our subreddit is named r/actuallesbians because r/lesbians is not really for or by lesbians–it was meant to be a joke. We’re not a militant or exclusive group, so feel free to join up!

Franklin Graham hits out at Pope Francis for ‘normalising homosexuality’

Franklin Graham hits out at Pope Francis for 'normalising homosexuality'

Evangelical preacher Franklin Graham has lashed out at Pope Francis for “trivialising Christ’s sacrifice” by “normalising homosexuality”.

Pope Francis suggested in a documentary that premiered on Wednesday (October 21) that gay people “have a right to be part of the family” and threw his support behind “civil union law” so same-sex relationships can be “legally covered”.

The comments made global headlines and represented a major break from traditional Catholic teaching.

And it’s safe to say that Franklin Graham is not impressed.

In a lengthy Facebook post on Thursday (October 22), Graham hit out at Pope Francis, branding his comments “unthinkable in light of the Word of God”.

Graham went on to reference the Old Testament in his efforts to prove that the family is composed of a “male husband and a female wife” and a number of children.

The right-wing preacher suggested that the love of God is “completely inclusive”, but went on to claim that people must “repent” in order for society to be “saved”.

Franklin Graham hit out at Pope Francis for ‘trivialising Christ’s sacrifice’.

“For Pope Francis to attempt to normalise homosexuality is to say that Holy Scriptures are false, that our sins really don’t matter, and that we can continue living in them,” Graham wrote.

“If that were true, then Jesus Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection wouldn’t have been needed. The cross would have been for nothing. No one has the right or the authority to trivialise Christ’s sacrifice on our behalf.”

Graham continued: “I want everyone to know the truth and to find the peace that come sonly from fully surrendering our lives to Him and His commands.

“The consequence of an unrepentant, unbelieving heart is also clear in the Word of God – eternal death.

“Unless we repent and receive His offer of forgiveness, surrendering our lives to Him, we will spend eternity as part of a different family when we leave this earth – the family of the condemned.”

No one has the right or the authority to trivialise Christ’s sacrifice on our behalf.

Graham’s firm rebuke came just hours after Pope Francis sent shockwaves across the world when his comments were revealed in the documentary Francesco, which debuted at the Rome Film Festival on Wednesday.

His pro-gay remarks came as a surprise to many within the LGBT+ community, as the pope has previously kept firmly with Catholic Church teachings that oppose any progress in LGBT+ rights.

In 2013, he made global headlines when he called on the Catholic church to “show mercy, not condemnation” to gay people – representing a stark shift in tone from his predecessors.

But in 2019, he told a Spanish newspaper that parents who see signs of homosexuality in their children should “consult a professional” – a comment that was considered by many to endorse conversion therapy.

Meanwhile, he has been staunch in his opposition to trans identities, comparing them to nuclear war and genetic manipulation in 2015.

In 2019, the Vatican released a document claiming that “gender ideology” is a “move away from nature”.