Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Reading Rainbow 2

My friend, writer/activist, Michael Crawford came up with a list of 10 (non-fiction) books he feels every gay man should read.
Here's his list:

1. Ultimate Gay Sex
2. Making Gay History
3. From Boys to Men: Gay Men Write About Growing Up
4. Outing Yourself
5. The Way Out

6. And the Band Played On
7. Queer in America
8. Beyond the Down Low: Sex, Lies, and Denial in Black America
9. My Life and the Paradise Garage
10. Virtually Normal: An Argument About Homosexuality
I wrote a similar post on this topic here in August entitled: Reading Rainbow
Here's my list for fiction (REALLY) in no particular order:
1. Dancer From the Dance- Andrew Holleran (My all-time favorite)
2. Grief- Andrew Holleran
3. The Beauty of Men- Andrew Holleran
4. Faggots- Larry Kramer
5. The Normal Heart- Larry Kramer
6. 86'd- David Feinberg
7. Hard- Wayne Hoffman
8. Rushes- John Rechy
9. Afterlife- Paul Monette

10. The Beautiful Room is Empty- Edmund White
In that post from August I said:
"It's important to keep these books in mind. Some of them are the only history books we have, the only artifacts the gay community has to recall their histories, memories, pains and passions. There certainly aren't any American schoolbooks that will touch the subject.


Sam J. Miller said...

Ack!! No James Baldwin?!? No Jean Genet? Reinaldo Arenas?!? creepy dirty William S. Burroughs?

Why do i love lists so much? i guess it's a good excuse to get a dialogue started.


Sam J

Anonymous said...


I'm glad you enjoyed my post. I am working on a fiction list that I will post soon. Some of the books you included on your list will be on mine.

I love when people share the books, movies, albums that have meant a lot to them. You can find out a lot about the person and find interesting things that you may never have come across.

Jeff said...

Eric, I found these two books really interesting reads.

What the Bible Really Says About Homosexuality by Daniel A. Helminiak

Gay New York: Gender, Urban Culture, and the Making of the Gay Male World, 1890-1940

Papagayo said...

Good list, Eric. I'm glad to have your recommendations.
I agree with Jeff- Gay New York by George Chauncey is a great look at the development of the Greenwich village gayborhood.
Also, Becoming A Man by Paul Monette is a great autobiography of a gay poet and teacher.

Anonymous said...

Gay men should also read literature on feminism and gender theory, and learn how these areas of study inform queer theory. You can't have a full discussion on gay rights without mentioning women's rights at some point. The former is a scion of the latter.

I recommend "Delusions of Gender: How Our Minds, Society, and Neurosexism Create Difference", by Cordelia Fine. It's a trenchant criticism of the popular but pseudoscientific sex-difference trends in the media.