Abdellah Taïa, author of the novel An Arab Melancholia, discusses his oppressed childhood as a gay boy in 1980s Morocco. Taïa wrote:

“By the time I was 10, though no one spoke of it, I knew what happened to boys like me in our impoverished society; they were designated victims, to be used, with everyone’s blessing, as easy sexual objects by frustrated men. And I knew that no one would save me — not even my parents, who surely loved me. For them too, I was shame, filth. A ‘zamel.’”

Bravely, and quite powerfully, he later came out to the Morocco press with his second book, Le rouge du tarbouche (the red of the fez). He also wrote a letter published in Moroccan magazine TelQuel titled “Homosexuality Explained to My Mother.”

Taïa says he became a writer “to do justice to little Abdellah. To never forget the trauma he and every Arab homosexual like him suffered.” Read his piece (which was translated from French) here.

Chaz Bono to Serve as Grand Marshal for Fourth Annual Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade: Chaz Bono –son of Sonny and Cher, author, and LGBT advocate– will lead the Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade as Grand Marshal. The parade will occur on April 15, 2012. For more information, see the full report here.

Atlanta artist Philip Bonneau to Re-Imagines Traditional Comic Book Heroes in Upcoming Exhibit: Gay artist Philip Bonneau will soon boast a MISTER Community Center exhibit. Called “Heroes + Villians #2”, Bonneau’s queer take on superheroes will run for a month in the Atlanta-based center.

“Not every boy wants to be Batman or Superman; some boys want to be Wonder Woman,” Bonneau said. [GAVoice]

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