Summer Reading Series Part 1: Pride

rainbow-colored books behind da pair of glasses. Throughout the summer students, faculty, and staff at the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith will release weekly reading (and watching) lists, centered around amplifying diverse voices, and sharing fulfilling, fun, moving, and monumental stories with the UAFS community. 


For the first week of this summer series, the dedicated librarians at the UAFS Boreham Library created a list that celebrates and honors the LGBTQIA+ community and the excitement of Pride Month.


Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (1974) directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder; Recommended by Jordan Ruud 

This film is about a straight couple, but it's a movie from one of the great LGBTQ geniuses of the 20th century, who distilled the isolated struggles that so many social outsiders face into this story of a relationship between an older woman and a younger foreign worker. 

Cruising the Library: Perversities in the Organization of Knowledge by Melissa Adler

We think of the organization of knowledge as an objective and almost scientific matter, but this book – with an eye toward how libraries and their systems of cataloging represent gender and sexuality – reveals that it's anything but that. How can we truly capture human diversity? Cruising the Library doesn't hold all the answers, but it starts asking some provocative questions.


On Earth we're briefly gorgeous : a novel by Ocean Vuong; Recommended by Jason D. Phillips

This is an autobiographical coming-of-age story that follows Little Dog as he recounts his family’s history – how his grandmother survived the Vietnam War working as a sex worker, how his mother provided for her family as a nail salon worker, and how Little Dog experiences his first tragic relationship with Trevor, a drug-addicted teenager.  This beautiful, haunting, and tragic novel was nominated for the National Book Award and is in development to become a feature film. 


Fighting proud : the untold story of the gay men who served in two world wars by Stephen Bourne ; Recommended by Jason D. Phillips

In a nod to Memorial Day, I would like to recommend this non-fiction book that highlights the contributions of British gay men in World War I and World War II.  This book includes excerpts from diary entries, photographs, and letters, detailing the love, sacrifice, and contributions these men made on behalf of their country.  



Paris is Burning (1990) directed by Jennie Livingston; produced by Off White Productions and Jennie Livingston | Paris is burning : a queer film classic  by Lucas Hilderbrand; Recommended by Jason D. Phillips

Paris is Burning is a widely influential documentary detailing the 1980s ball culture of New York City and the African-American, Latino, gay, and transgender communities involved in it.  “The film generated significant debate about a variety of issues including the intersectionality of race, class, and gender; trans-visibility; queer-of-color politics; the fluidity of identity; and the ethics of documentary filmmaking.”  This book is an examination of the film and its impact twenty years, offering context for the social politics of New York City in the 1980s.  


The Stonewall reader edited by Jason Baumann; Recommended by Jason D. Phillips

For the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, this anthology chronicles the tumultuous fight for LGBTQ rights in the 1960s and the activists who spearheaded it.  Drawing from the New York Public Library's archives, this book is a collection of first-hand accounts, diaries, and articles from LGBTQ magazines and newspapers that documented both the years leading up to and the years following the riots.  


Date Posted: 
Friday, June 4, 2021
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