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Contribution to Book
"Jeffrey Weeks."
Gay and Lesbian Literature. (1994)
  • Shelton Waldrep, University of Southern Maine
The writers featured here came to prominence during this century-about the only restriction apparent when surveying the 200 entries in this biobibliography, which has been endorsed by the ALA-Gay and Lesbian Task Force. Even the descriptors in the title are interpreted broadly: though his same-sex longings are well established, Thomas Mann is hardly a "gay writer"; and neither filmmaker Rainer Werner Fassbinder nor sociologist/historian Lillian Faderman are known for their literary stylings. Surprisingly, this breadth is the work's strength. The advisory board (mostly librarians) has done an outstanding job of presenting a group of authors and works that forces the reader to develop a multifaceted view of what "gay and lesbian literature" is. The entries follow a standard format: after a brief chronology of achievements, bibliographies of primary and secondary writings are provided; critical essays, ranging from one column (on Jewish American novelist Lev Raphael) to four pages (on Marcel Proust), assess the author's written works. The essays emphasize either how the author's homosexuality affected the writings of the relatively closeted or how the more "out" authors were received in light of their openness. While some of these authors may be found in other critical sources, the approach of these highly readable essays make them invaluable to the researcher, the interested lay reader, and the library book selector alike. The volume is completed by indexes, including one by genre/subject, an appendix listing various gay book awards and recipients, and a list of additional authors not appearing in this first edition.
Publication Date
Sharon Malinowski
St. James
Citation Information
Shelton Waldrep. ""Jeffrey Weeks."" DetroitGay and Lesbian Literature. (1994)
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