Show me the books he loves and I shall know the man far better than through mortal friends - Silas Weir MitchellToday guest is Sarah Schulman, American novelist, historian and playwright and early chronicler of the AIDS crisis. Sarah is a Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at the City University of New York, College of Staten Island and a Fellow at the New York Institute for the Humanities at New York University.
Jean Genet's Funeral Rites
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Faber and Faber (September 25, 2009)
Amazon: Funeral Rites
Jean Genet's sensual and brutal portrait of World War Two unfolds between the poles of his grief for his lover Jean, killed in the Resistance during the liberation of Paris, and his perverse attraction to the collaborator Riton. Powerfully written, and with moments of great poetic subtlety, Funeral Rites is a dark meditation on the mirror images of love and hate, sex and death. Translated by Bernard Frechtman
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Parting The Waters by Taylor Branch
Paperback: 1088 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster; First Paperback Edition edition (November 15, 1989)
Amazon: Parting The Waters
Hailed as the most masterful story ever told of the American civil rights movement, Parting the Waters is destined to endure for generations. Moving from the fiery political baptism of Martin Luther King, Jr., to the corridors of Camelot where the Kennedy brothers weighed demands for justice against the deceptions of J. Edgar Hoover, here is a vivid tapestry of America, torn and finally transformed by a revolutionary struggle unequaled since the Civil War. Taylor Branch provides an unsurpassed portrait of King's rise to greatness and illuminates the stunning courage and private conflict, the deals, maneuvers, betrayals, and rivalries that determined history behind closed doors, at boycotts and sit-ins, on bloody freedom rides, and through siege and murder. Epic in scope and impact, Branch's chronicle definitively captures one of the nation's most crucial passages.
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Most Recently Read and Enjoyed
Secret History: The Biography of Sam Seward by Justin Spring
Paperback: 496 pages
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; First Edition edition (July 19, 2011)
Amazon: Secret Historian: The Life and Times of Samuel Steward, Professor, Tattoo Artist, and Sexual Renegade
A finalist for the 2010 National Book Award. Drawn from the secret, never-before-seen diaries, journals, and sexual records of the novelist, poet, and university professor Samuel M. Steward, Secret Historian is a sensational reconstruction of one of the more extraordinary hidden lives of the twentieth century. An intimate friend of Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas, and Thornton Wilder, Steward maintained a secret sex life from childhood on, and documented these experiences in brilliantly vivid (and often very funny) detail. After leaving the world of academe to become Phil Sparrow, a tattoo artist on Chicago’s notorious South State Street, Steward worked closely with Alfred Kinsey on his landmark sex research. During the early 1960s, Steward changed his name and identity once again, this time to write exceptionally literate, upbeat pro-homosexual pornography under the name of Phil Andros. Until today he has been known only as Phil Sparrow—but an extraordinary archive of his papers, lost since his death in 1993, has provided Justin Spring with the material for an exceptionally compassionate and brilliantly illuminating life-and-times biography. More than merely the story of one remarkable man, Secret Historian is a moving portrait of homosexual life long before Stonewall and gay liberation.
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About Sarah Schulman: Sarah Schulman is the author of fifteen books, including nine novels. She has won a Guggenheim Fellowship in Playwrighting, a Fullbright in Judaic Studies, two American Library Association Book Awards, and is the 2009 recipient of the Kessler Prize for sustained contribution to LGBT studies. Sarah is Distinguished Professor at the City University of New York, College of State Island, a Fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities at New York University. She is on the advisory board of the Center for Human Rights and Social Movements at Harvard's Kennedy School. She is the US coordinator of the first LGBT Delegation to Palestine. She lives in New York.
The Child by Sarah Schulman
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Arsenal Pulp Press (September 1, 2008)
Amazon: The Child
The Child, a Lambda Literary Award finalist, is the eleventh and perhaps most controversial book by acclaimed lesbian writer Sarah Schulman, available for the first time in paperback. This novel explores the parameters of queer teen sexuality against a backdrop of hysteria and sanctioned homophobia, based on the 1997 sexual assault and murder of an eleven-year-old boy by a fifteen-year-old. Stew is a lonely teen who discovers love on an adult website. But when his older boyfriend is arrested in an Internet pedophilia sting, his proclivities are revealed to his family and friends, to his horror. Devastated by these revelations and left to fend for himself, he ends up committing murder. Brazen and daring in its themes, The Child is a powerful indictment of sex panic in America, and a plaintive meditation on isolation and desire.
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