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This week the Los Angeles Review of Books published an online interview with Charles Henry Rowell, editor of Callaloo: A Journal of African Diaspora Arts and Letters. For the first time ever, Rowell publicly discusses his experiences as a black gay editor in the United States, as well as the history of Callaloo and its recent publication in the United Kingdom.
Over the past year, there has been a rise in pro-gay children’s books, meant to encourage children to be more accepting of same-sex romantic relationships and same-sex parents. Recently, Amber Dee Parker and Hannah Sequra have responded with an anti-gay picture book called God Made Dad and Mom. The plot, which is told from the perspective of a young boy named Michael, begins when he and his classmate Jimmy, who has two dads, go on a school trip to the zoo and are told that animal families “consist of a male, a female, and their offspring.” After the trip, Michael prays that Jimmy and his two dads will discover “the truth” about how God created them.
Since April 5, the largest festival in North America to celebrate the life and work of poet and playwright Federico García Lorca has been taking place throughout New York City. The festival, which is simply called Lorca in NY and focuses primarily on Lorca’s brief time in New York City, will continue through July 21. It features an exhibit at the New York Public Library’s Stephen A. Schwarzman building called Back Tomorrow: Federico García Lorca / Poet in New York, which has the manuscript of Poet in New York on display alongside drawings, photographs, letters and mementos. Aside from this daily exhibit, there are various events that will take place throughout June and July, including a concert by Patti Smith on June 5, and a reading of his work by writers such as John Giorno and Wayne Koestenbaum on June 10.
And with the Supreme Court expected to vote on the Defense of Marriage Act this month, the Huffington Post has created this infographic that maps out the recent shifts in support of gay marriage, both in the United States and abroad. In the past two months alone, the number of countries that have legalized marriage equality has gone from 11 to 14. The graphic suggests that as of May 2013, the majority of the nation, an estimated 53 percent, is in favor of same-sex marriage.
However, it was announced on Friday that the Illinois House of Representatives is no longer voting on the same-sex marriage bill this month. Back in February, the Illinois Senate voted in favor of the bill, and Governor Pat Quinn has already promised to sign off on it as well. The final decision therefore rests in the hands of the House, who have now asked for more time to consider the bill. They claim they will meet to discuss it again in the fall, at the very earliest.
[Photo: Charles Henry Rowell via Los Angles Review of Books]