In China, where same-sex marriage is not legal, gay men are looking to get married to lesbian women in order to obtain what is known as a xinghun, a “cooperative marriage”—essentially, a marriage in name only. The husband and wife continue to have relations with same-sex partners and are not required to live together either.

Although not every gay or lesbian individual is in favor of such a solution, others note the implicit benefits: fulfillment of societal norms and a significantly greater ease of being able to have or adopt a child, among others. For many years, China has instated a One-Child Policy to help control the population. Currently, only married couples are able to apply for a permit to have a child, and without this permit, the child cannot be registered for a hukou (the Chinese equivalent of a domestic passport). There are also fairly strict regulations for unmarried individuals who want to adopt. For instance, a single male must be at least 40 years older than the child he wants to adopt if she is a girl.

And last week in Paris, a gay couple was brutally beaten while walking arm in arm down the street. Since October, the city has allegedly seen a 30% increase in anti-gay incidents such as this one—for instance, in the very same weekend as the beating, a group of people were filmed vandalizing an LGBT fair. All of this stems from an opposition towards a bill currently under consideration in the senate that, if passed, would legalize same-sex marriage and adoption.

On Wednesday, April 17, the Academy of American Poets will be hosting the 11th annual Poetry and the Creative Mind at Lincoln Center in New York City. The event, which takes place in honor of National Poetry Month, features public figures and artists reading some of their favorite poems, including Jad Abumrad, Mario Batali, Dick Cavett, Patricia Clarkson, Tyne Daly, Glen Hansard, Rose Styron, Amber Tamblyn, Calvin Trillin, and Kathleen Turner.

Over the past two weeks, J. Bryan Lowder of Slate has been writing a series of essays about the Camp aesthetic. “Why is camp so obsessed with women?” he asks in one essay. “Can camp help us deal with a tragedy on the level of AIDS?” in another. Check out all of his articles here, starting from Entry 1: “Camp is not dead. It’s alive, well, and here to stay.”

Lastly, each year, the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) judges books by their cover, literally. A panel of jurors gets together to select the books, jackets and covers they feel reflect the most excellent designs of the publishing year. The panel recently announced their selections: 51 books and 44 jackets/covers, all of which will make up the 2013 Book, Jacket and Journal Show, which will premiere in Boston on June 20. Take a look at all of the books and designs at the AAUP website.



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  • Michael Craft

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