Happy New Year!
I’ve been meaning to read more LGBTQIA Classics for ages and when I saw the lovely Stacey @ Pretty Books talking about the 2016 Classics Challenge, I thought it was the perfect occasion to get me started. The challenge is for all classics but I’ll be focusing on those with sexuality and gender identity themes.
Aside from enjoying reading brilliant books about gender identity and sexuality, I’m also really interested in reading these classics in their context. Most writers are influenced by the time in which they’re writing and I would always assume that situations and beliefs described in older books would be very different, but it’s also interesting to see how things haven’t changed or have actually changed for the worse. In the case of speculative fiction titles, it’s interesting to see if the world imagined is a different kind of ground-breaking than the speculative fiction being written today.
I’m also interested in the language and vocabulary used, especially when it comes to gender identity and sexuality. I’m guessing some of it will be obsolete with some words even now being considered offensive. That can be disturbing while reading but I’ve always been very interested in changes in language so I’ll probably be mentioning that aspect when I talk about the classics.
I’ve looked through various web sources to get started on a to-read list. I like having a choice so the list of books I’m aiming to read is long on purpose as I want to keep these books on my radar. I’ll update this post with links to posts as they get published, as well as to add books. Do let me know if there’s any classic you’ve loved and isn’t on the list so I can add it!
Some of the books I’ll be looking forward to reading:
Orlando by Virginia Woolf
The Colour Purple by Alice Walker
The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall
The Swimming Pool Library by Alan Hollinghurst
Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin
Annie On My Mind by Nancy Garden
A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood
Maurice by E. M. Forster
The Price of Salt (now published as Carol) by Patricia Highsmith
Our Lady of the Flowers by Jean Genet
The City and the Pillar by Gore Vidal
The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
Poems by Sappho
Stone Butch Blues by Leslie Feinberg
Patience and Sarah by Isabel Miller
Zami by Audre Lorde
The Passion by Jeanette Winterson
The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K Le Guin
The Passion of New Eve by Angela Carter
I’m also listing below some classics which I have read but haven’t talked about here and may post about:
Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown
Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson
Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin
Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg
I’m very much looking forward to this challenge, I’m actually thinking of doing the same thing with films!