Although few gay actors have been permitted the luxury of openness, many of them have challenged and helped reconfigure notions of masculinity and, to a lesser extent, of homosexuality.
Lesbian actresses have played a significant role in Hollywood, but their contributions have rarely been recognized or spoken of openly; the "lavender marriage" is by no means a relic of the past.
Considering the unique set of problems facing lesbians who want to produce erotic art for the enjoyment of other lesbians, it is remarkable that so much lesbian erotica has been produced in so brief a time.
Olympian Brian Orser, known for both his athleticism and artistry, led a resurgence of Canada as a force to be reckoned with in men's figure skating; after being outed in a palimony suit, he has become an advocate for glbtq rights.
Although American gay film icon Brad Davis has been described as "the first heterosexual actor to die of AIDS," he was widely known as bisexual within the entertainment community.
Handsome, athletic, graceful, and charismatic, actor Errol Flynn was widely rumored to enjoy sexual relations with men as well as women.
In nineteenth-century America men who loved other men often suffered from guilt, but artists such as Winslow Homer and Thomas Eakins celebrated male camaraderie and affection, while expatriate John Singer Sargent depicted the dandy, and photographs documented male friendships.
An artistic movement that grew out of Dadaism and flourished in Europe shortly after World War I, Surrealism embraced the idea that art was an expression of the subconscious.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
At December's Australia Labor Party Conference, marriage equality will be on the agenda. Despite the opposition of Prime Minister Julia Gillard, members of the Labor Party will push for an endorsement of same-sex marriage.
Although polls indicate that more than 60% of Australians--including a larger majority of Labor Party members--support marriage equality, a conservative minority within the Labor Party are committed to blocking same-sex marriage.
Gillard had been opposed to allowing the question of marriage equality to be discussed during the Conference at all, but under pressure from supporters of same-sex marriage she relented to the extent of expressing support for a "conscience vote" on the question, i.e., to allow Labor Members of Parliament to vote their conscience on a private member's bill to amend the marriage laws to permit same-sex marriage.
However, most observers believe that unless the Labor Party requires its members to vote for marriage equality, the attempt to amend the marriage laws will fail, since the opposition Liberal Party will require its members to vote against marriage equality.
The Australian Labor Party has instituted important reforms since gaining power in the federal elections of 2007. In November 2008, the Australian Parliament passed laws that for the first time recognized same-sex couples in federal law, extending to them the same rights as unmarried heterosexual couples in areas such as taxation, social security and health, aged care and employment, as long as they can prove that they are in a de facto relationship. Nevertheless, Australia does not have a national registered partnership or civil unions, though some Australian states do.
The opposition of Prime Minister Gillard, who became Prime Minister in June 2010, to same-sex marriage has led to a revolt from the left-wing of the Labor Party, and may lead to the loss of support from the small Green Party, which has supported her fragile coalition government.
Meanwhile, GetUp, an independent, grass-roots community advocacy organization has adopted marriage equality as a cause and has been prodding Gillard and the Labor Party to amend the marriage laws.
In an attempt to embarrass Gillard, or at least expose her to the views of some of her constituents, GetUp bid $31,000 to win a charity auction's first prize, which was an intimate dinner with the Prime Minister. The organization announced that three same-sex couples were selected to attend the dinner. However, the Prime Minister has reneged on the promise to hold the dinner in a timely fasion.
In this video, the Australian Broadcasting Company reports on the controversy:
GetUp has also issued an emotional video in favor of same-sex marriage entitled "It's Time."