After a brief hiatus from the GLBT Library Blog, we’d like to a take a moment to introduce some of the new student employees at the GLBTSSS Office. We’ll share a little bit about ourselves and recommend our favorite books or movies in the library!
Thom, Library Coordinator
Hello everyone! My name is Thom. I use they/them pronouns. I identify as genderqueer and non-binary and I’m very excited to work with the library at the wonderful GLBT Student Support Center! Queer books have meant a lot to me since stumbling across a copy of Samuel R. Delany’s Dhalgren as a teen. What I thought was going to be a sci-fi epic turned out to be a complex meditation on identity and memory, writing and queerness. It was the first book that I read that portrayed queer sexuality and queer modes of being that fully embraced the the richness of language and the difficulties of pinning experience down in language. Every time I get my hands on a copy to re-read some passage, it winds up in someone else’s possession. Serendipity brought the book to my attention, picking a fat tome off the shelves of Barnes and Noble. I’m hoping that you come across something on our shelves that resonates deeply with you, becomes your new favorite book or the thing you can’t stop talking about fifteen years later. If there’s something you are looking for and can’t find it, we want to hear about it!
If you’re looking for some Samuel Delany in our collection I suggest The Motion of Light in
Water: Sex and Science Fiction Writing in the East Village 1960-1965. It is Delany’s memoir about being a black, queer writer of science fiction in New York in the 1960’s. He recounts sitting in on Allan Kaprow’s performance art Happenings, his open marriage to the queer poet Marilyn Hacker, meeting Bob Dylan and Albert Einstein, all told in beautiful, rich prose.
I’m excited to work with a collection that’s got a baby zine collection growing up and contains books like Casey Plett’s A Safe Girl to Love and Kate Bornstein’s Gender Outlaw: On Men, Women, and the Rest of Us and Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex edited by Eric A. Stanley and Nat Smith, with an introduction by CeCe McDonald (!!), and allll the Buffy.
Tessa, Library Coordinator
Hi! I’m a first-year MLS student, I have an feisty black cat named Lilith, and like reading poetry and comics. I identify as a queer woman, and I’m looking forward to making sure the library fits the needs of our students and represents the spectrum of intersectional diversity here on campus. I previously did a little bit of work at the library in the LGBT Center at the University of Louisville where I did my undergrad in English, so I’m excited to be working here with Thom this semester and beyond! Feel free to ask me for help with GLBTQ-related research, or just stop in to chat. I also hope that more people will take advantage of our cozy little space to just hang out, study, and feel surrounded by a community of people and books! The things you read can also help tell a story about who you are and what you like, so I thought I’d also share a few books in our collection that have either been influential in learning more about myself, or just fun reads that I would highly recommend!
- The Ethical Slut by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy. I read the second edition about a year ago and since have been reveling in its eye-opening greatness. If you’re interested at all in polyamory or open relationships, there is a wide range of ways to experience multiple romantic partners. I don’t necessarily identify as polyamorous, but I’m comfortable with non-monogamy. I have limited experience, but open relationships and overcoming jealousy can be tricky stuff; feel free to talk to me about it!
- Mysterious Acts by My People by ValerieWetlaufer. This is a wonderful poetry collection that was recently added to the library. Wetlaufer has a colorful voice and interesting perspective on queer relationships and intimacy, as well as grief and loss. Things in this book: “kinky boots & cat suits,” herbal remedies (re: spells) for unexpected house guests, a love letter written on the skin of a baby lamb, and as the cover suggests plenty of elk.
- Fun Home by Alison Bechdel. You may know Bechdel from her hilarious strip Dykes to Watch Out For (1982-2008) or the infamous Bechdel Test (Do at least two women talk to each other about something other than a man?). In the tradition of cartoon autobiography similar to Maus and Persepolis, Bechdel tells a visually striking coming-(out)-of-age story about her childhood living in a funeral home, her relationship with her closeted queer father and her own sexual discovery. Drawing literary allusions from
Ulysses throughout, my favorite part about Bechdel’s narrative is the major role libraries and books played in her discovery of her lesbian identity and feminist theory.
- Blue is the Warmest Color directed by Abdellatif Kechiche and based on the French graphic novel by Julie Maroh. I haven’t read the graphic novel yet (I’ve been meaning to get to it!), but I would highly recommend the film. We have both in our collection, so if you’d like to torture yourself by comparing the book with the film adaptations let me know what the difference are! This is truly a warm film with both sweet romance, hot sex, and heartbreak.
Sydney, Office Assistant, QNews and Graphic Design
I’m Sydney Ziegler, a Freshman studying Media Advertising. I love to binge watch on Netflix, bake delicious cupcakes, obsess over cats, and practice calligraphy. I believe that everyone has something to offer, and I love getting to know people better. I deeply, whole-heartedly suggest reading The Danish Girl in the GLBT Library. It’s a beautiful piece of literature that so simply and delicately describes a situation that many people are attempting to understand. I haven’t had the chance to explore many other of the GLBT Library resources, but to have such a facility where one can feel represented in media is amazing.