This LGBT+ History Month we are celebrating Poetry, Prose and Plays, and the LGBT+ writers that have changed and shaped the literary and theatrical landscapes.
From the moment the lights dim and the curtain draws back we are captivated. We laugh, we cry, we sing along, all the time sharing the experiences of those on stage.
As part of LGBT+ History month, the university is focusing on several literary figures. We thought it would be interesting to look at Forster’s life and work and contrast it to that of a contemporary author, to see how society and attitudes have moved on.
LGBT+ writers are responsible for some of the most powerful, beautiful, captivating words ever committed to print. When we look through lists of the greatest literary works of all time we often see the usual suspects: Don Quixote, Pride and Prejudice, Frankenstein, et al. And these are of course masterful works that rightfully deserve recognition and their places in the literary pantheon. But we rarely see any prose titles written by queer authors and tackling queer subject matters. There is a treasure trove rich with novels, short stories, essays and more by and about LGBT+ people, some more famed than others, offering insight and emotional connection to those readers who wish to explore their pages.
I remember learning about Allen Ginsberg and Beatniks when I was 17. A group of typical “bad boys” with a lot of issues but mostly kind hearts from a classroom next door were interested in Philosophy, Literature and Music and we somehow became friends. As a girl who grew up in church, we mostly talked in school and I rarely got into their extracurricular shenanigans. Or at least that is how I remember it. Nevertheless, I ended up saving up for all the translated books by Jack Kerouac which were interesting reads, but they did not manage to capture me the same way Allen Ginsberg’s poetry did.
LGBT+ poetry and poets have a rich tradition in the literary history, especially from the 20th century onward, even though there are many challenges when it comes to tracing it.