Langston Hughes, whose literary legacy is enormous and varied, was closeted, but homosexuality was an important influence on his literary imagination, and many of his poems may be read as gay texts.
The writers of the Beat Generation, many of whom were gay or bisexual, endorsed gay rights as a part of their rebellion against inhibition and self-censorship.
The Comedy of Manners, which flourished on the Restoration stage, has been particularly amenable to twentieth-century gay male writers as a vehicle for social satire in both dramatic and nondramatic works.
Using his and his family's experiences, particularly his childhood in Raleigh, North Carolina, and his own wacky perspective on life, David Sedaris has become a world-famous humorist, comedian, writer, playwright, and radio personality.
From the great modernist writers of the 1920s and 1930s to the pulp writers of the 1950s to the lesbian writers of today, lesbian novelists have had a powerful impact on the lesbian community.
From its beginning, the nineteenth century in England had a purposeful homosexual literature of considerable bulk, both male and female, though it was fettered by oppression.
Persecuted for his homosexuality by the Castro government he had once championed, Cuban novelist, essayist, and poet Reinaldo Arenas challenged all types of ideological dogmatism.
Baudelaire was among the first French poets to include lesbians as subjects.
Chance Dunn from Sioux City, one of the scholarship recipients.
Congratulations to the Iowa students who have won Matthew Shepard Scholarships from the Eychaner Foundation of Des Moines. The Foundation recently announced that five students (Arianna Dahlin from Ainsworth, Chanse Dunn from Sioux City, Michelle Robinson from Marshalltown, Derek Steinauer from Cedar Rapids, and Fabio Vidal from Des Moines) have been named 2012 Silver Matthew Shepard Scholars, and three (Connor Ferguson from Wayland, Keaton Fuller from Clinton, and Hollie Wilson from Des Moines) have been named Gold Matthew Shepard Scholars.
Founded in 1975 by Rich Eychaner to promote tolerance, the Foundation began the Matthew Shepard Scholarship program in 2000 in memory of the young college student slain in 1998. The Silver Matthew Shepard Scholarship is an award of up to $9,000 over four years; the Gold Matthew Shepard Scholarship is an award of up to $40,000 over four years.
Matthew Shepard Scholars must be openly glbtq graduates of Iowa High Schools who demonstrate academic aptitude and achievement and present a record of community service, especially within the glbtq community.
The Eychaner Foundation also supports anti-bullying efforts in Iowa schools.
In 2011, Rich Eychaner was inducted into OneIowa's Iowa Volunteer Hall of Fame for providing outstanding volunteer service to benefit others, especially for his leadership in the effort to assure non-discrimination and equal rights for glbtq Iowans. Through his efforts, an anti-bullying law was enacted and protection for gays and lesbians was added to the Iowa Civil Rights Code.
Among other organizations that offer scholarships to glbtq youth are the Point Foundation, the Gill Foundation, and Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (P-FLAG).
One of the 2012 Matthew Shepard Scholars, Chanse Dunn of Sioux City's West High School, was profiled on KCAU-TV on April 29, 2012.
The video below introduces the 2011 Matthew Shepard Scholars.