Good news…. Gay Seattle joined by Imagining Gay Paradise

A companion volume to Gay Seattle has now been published and is available in hard cover, paperback and digitally.   Gay Seattle examines the ways lesbians and gay men constructed a new home in the temperate rainforest climate and culture of the Pacific Northwest despite being exiled by sodomy laws and anti-gay medical practices.The new book,  Imagining Gay Paradise: Bali, Bangkok and Cyber-Singapore takes the exploration to the tropical beaches and peninsulas of Southeast Asia, tracing a century-long saga of gay men who created an aesthetic paradise in Bali in the 1920s and 1930s, an erotic paradise called Babylon in Bangkok in the 1980s, and a cyber-paradise in Singapore at the turn of the 21st century. You can get more information and read excerpts at the site linked above.

Both books will be the topic of a reading and discussion scheduled at Seattle University, April 12, 7-9 p.m. Stay tuned for more details about that and future discussions, particularly in Bali, Bangkok, Singapore, and Amsterdam.

Buy Gay Seattle from, Barnes & Noble, or University of Washington Press

Add Gay Seattle to your Goodreads:

Gay Seattle: Stories Of Exile And Belonging

Buy Imagining Gay Paradise from, Barnes & Noble, Columbia University Press, or Hong Kong University Press

Add Imagining Gay Paradise to your Goodreads:

Imagining Gay Paradise: Bali, Bangkok, and Cyber-Singapore

From Exile to Belonging: The New Gay Marriage Story in Washington

This February, the fight for gay and lesbian marriage in Washington state is finally moving toward a successful legislative conclusion — some four decades after two men,  Faygele benMiriam and Paul Barwick, went to the court house in King County to demand a license. They were, of course, denied. The two later filed a lawsuit that made its way to the Washington State Court of Appeals which ruled that marriage was between a man and a woman only. What’s fascinating, of course, is that both men worked more from a fraternal understanding of how extended and innovative gay relationships could be constructed rather than a romantic mindset. Neither especially believed in that triple supremacy of romantic, heterosexual monogamy — but they did believe queers everywhere had a right to claim whatever type of relationship they wanted.  Theirs is one of the many stories you can read in Gay Seattle: Stories of Exile and Belonging.

For the present, the accolades go to those legislators, especially state Senator Ed Murray, who patiently worked through years of objections with a step-by-step approach: a judicial challenge to the states Defense of Marriage Act (sorry to say the judges had not enough courage to strike down the law); a domestic partnership law; an “everything but the marriage word” domestic partnership upgrade; and finally gubernatorial support and legislative success.  A new story for another edition of Gay Seattle!

Jump to excerpts from Gay Seattle about the first attempt by two gay men to secure a marriage license in Seattle in 1971

 For an update on current relations between the Seattle Catholic Archdiocese and the local LGBTQ community, following the recognition by Washington state of marriage equality, see “Mass Uprising” by Dominic Holden in The Stranger.