Too Queer by Victoria A. Brownworth

cover of the book Too QueerToo Queer by Victoria A. Brownworth
Genre: Biography
Copyright Year:
Published: 1996
Publisher: Firebrand Books
Format: Trade Paperback
No. of Pages: 264
No. In Series:
ISBN: 9781563410741
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Q is widely published and highly controversial lesbian journalist Victoria A. Brownworth’s revealing collection exploring the contours of her personal and political radicalism. This multiple Pulitzer Prize nominee, the author and editor of eight previous books, presents an anti-assimilationist, broadly multicultural, and fiercely iconoclastic vision of American radicalism – a political perspective she fears is becoming eroded even within the communities for which it is most vital. Amazon. com Review This collection of essays, most of which have previously appeared in major lesbian and mainstream periodicals, begins with an account of Victoria Brownworth’s development as a radical child. A white girl standing up for civil rights, an out lesbian speaking her mind in a Catholic high school, Brownworth went on to wrestle with the controversies of queer culture: passing as straight, economic class consciousness, lipstick lesbians, lesbian chic, same-sex marriage, and why queers are pushing for service in the military. An early, extremely principled proponent of selective outing, Brownworth’s voice remains provocative and intelligent. Too Queer is a Lambda Literary Award finalist for Lesbian Studies and Small Press. From Publishers Weekly Brownworth, a lesbian journalist, has put together a collection of essays rooted in her belief ‘in the power and importance of radicalism? not simply as a theoretical construct, but as a working principle to live by. ‘ In a mixture of personal experiences and political analysis, Brownworth exposes a vast array of American social evils? from homelessness to the Oklahoma bombings? and offers a radical queer reading of each. The results are varied. Her strongest arguments effectively rebut writers like Bruce Bawer (A Place at the Table) and Andrew Sullivan (Virtually Normal) whose integrationist politics, Brownworth argues, are ultimately self-loathing and potentially disastrous to the queer community. She also examines the complexities of abortion, carefully outlining why she feels both pro-choice and pro-life. Issues of race, class and gender are constantly brought to the forefront in arenas they are often left out of. Unfortunately, these are the highlights of an otherwise unsatisfying collection. Her insistence that American lesbians and gays are ‘at war’ in a homophobic society takes on a nihilistic edge which would send almost anyone running back into the closet. The preface, in particular (written, we are told repeatedly, on the eve of Independence Day), is at once too sentimental and too apocalyptic in its effort to connect the Civil War; the violence which marked 1995 (the assassination of Yitzak Rabin, the O. J. Simpson trial, war in Bosnia, etc. ); and homophobia. Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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