Edward Carpenter

“Because you have, given me a ground for the love of men I thank you continually in my heart … For you have made men to be not ashamed of the noblest instinct of their nature. Women are beautiful; but to some, there is that which passes the love of women.”

— Edward Carpenter in letter to Walt Whitman

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György Faludy

György Faludy ranks high on the list of revolutionary bisexual writers. Considering the people he shares that category with, that is no small thing. A Jewish man who was born in Hungary and spent most of his life in love with his home country, he was the picture of a patriot. In that, he got in scuffles with the state more than once. Upon finding, again and again, the affection he lavished upon his homeland to be unreturned, he lavished more, from a distance when he could. A man who was remembered as having “... lived everywhere, met everybody, and was ousted from everywhere,” in the invitation to his 95th birthday party, we are excited to discuss with you the life of György Faludy.

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Chrystos

In this article, I will explore the life and impact of Menominee two-spirit lesbian activist, formidable writer, and fierce warrior with a blade to the throat of corruption and injustice; Chrystos. From a harsh upbringing riddled with sexual, physical and emotional abuse, mental illness, and the pain of surviving on the streets as a Native American in a world that silences their very existence, Chrystos self-educated themselves and became a voice for the broken, beaten, and oppressed. To this day, their accomplishments as an Indigenous rights activist and poet has been widely recognized, won numerous awards, and politics are an essential part of their writing with their life as a lesbian and Native American being unapologetically at the forefront of it all. For their own personal preferences, I will be using they/them/their pronouns.

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Billy Tipton and the Question of Gender

Gender is strange, and when looking back in history it can seem doubly so. Between constant language shifts, the erasure many transgender people suffered from cisgender historians, and—for safety and privacy reasons—trans people themselves staying hidden, it can seem impossible to identify transgender people in history. With transgender men, there is an additional wrench thrown in the works.

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Sophia Parnok, Russia's Sappho

For our last article in this year’s women’s history month celebration, we focus on a woman known throughout Russia as one of their first openly lesbian poets. Sophia Parnok was a Jewish poet born in Russia in 1885 and has grown a small reputation for being one of the first out lesbian poets in her home country. Though her work is not widespread, it is impactful. And while the government tried to curb that impact with censorship, today we will work to continue to spread that effect by sharing her story.

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Maryam Khatoon Molkara, a Woman who Changed her Country

For our third article in women’s history month, we will look at a pioneer for transgender rights in Iran, a woman who changed her country and the world, Maryam Khatoon Molkara. As a transgender woman of faith Maryam represents an often ignored sector of the queer community. To help fix this we will shine a light on the story of a woman who in 1987 faced religious leaders to change how transgender people were viewed within the Muslim community and the laws regarding transgender people in Iran. So now we are proud to look into the life of the woman responsible for changing the discussion around transgender rights in Iran.

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Bricktop, and the Happy Ending

In the first week of women’s history month, we go to the second half of a two-part article about the incredible Ada Smith, or more simply known as, Bricktop. As we reviewed last time, she was an incredible woman who was successful and loved throughout the nightlife in 20’s Paris. We left off on that light note, but just like most of the world, Bricktop’s life changed when World War 2 began, and that is what we will be exploring next.

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Bricktop, the Fabulous

To wrap up Black History Month, we are going to do another two-part article looking at a woman who was the center of the night scene in Paris during the 20’s. We will look at a woman who was not only talented in her own right, but also fostered the talent of the people around her, and made connections with some of the most incredible rising stars of her day. We will discuss the impact of a woman who was loved by almost everyone she interacted with. 

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Tamara de Lempicka's Life

When writing an article about an artist, one expects to have some discussion of the art created by the person in question, but in this case, that is going to be avoided. Tamara de Lempicka was a highly controversial artist, and there is no lack of people studying her work, no matter which side they fall on in regards to its worth. But we are not going to be looking at that, as we are not art experts, and have never claimed to be. We are going to be looking instead at her life, and it is an extraordinary one to discuss. Tamara was a bisexual woman who was made a refugee twice in her life, first by the Bolsheviks, then later by the Nazis. She was called bourgeois while simultaneously being poor, so she will no doubt provide more than enough for us to fill an article.

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The Story of the Ladies of Llangollen

This week, we find ourselves again surrounded by political turmoil. In moments like these, we always have to consider if our voice is needed in the dialogue. If we could say anything that hasn’t already been said. This week we found there is nothing we need to add, so instead we will take this time we have with our dearest readers and tell you all a love story. The story of the Ladies of Llangollen, Eleanor Butler, and Sarah Ponsonby, two Irish women who fell in love, and lived happily ever after. A type of story that is all too uncommon in our history, but we are happy to share with you now.

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The Future of Queer Media

With this final article in our series on queer representation in media, we will look at where we want to see queer media go in the next decade, wrapping up our queer media series. Researching this final leg of the series was difficult, as it's hard to research the future, but we did our best. We interviewed the main team of a project in production, and the Executive Director of Represent, all of whom gave us insight into the present state of queer media, and using our research into the patterns of our past we can get a glimpse of what the future holds.

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Different from the Others, the Beginning

This week, we will begin our second series, in which we will discuss queer representation in film and television. For the first time in the history of this project, it will be in chronological order. To start this series, we find ourselves at the beginning, at the first film to portray queer people positively and explicitly: Different from the Others (Anders Als Die Andern) which was released in 1919. We want to clarify that this is not a media review, so we will not be discussing the quality of the film, but instead its existence and its contents.

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The Golden Orchid

After a long stretch of Grace stepping up and saving the day by writing the articles, Laura is back and excited to talk about Golden Orchid Society. The Golden Orchid Society was a collection of organizations in South China that began during the Qing dynasty and existed from approximately 1644 to 1949 when they were banned because they were associated with an attempt to overthrow the Manchu Emperor. Over the course of 300 years, however, they created an order of women who stood in solidarity with other women against heterosexual marriages that were oppressive at best and far too often abusive. While some of the women may have been heterosexual and avoiding marriage for reasons unrelated to their sexuality, it was common for members of the association to be lesbians or bisexual. They found the safety and family in the Golden Orchid Society that their biological relatives had never provided them.

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