Female impersonation need say nothing about sexual identity, but it has for a long time been almost an institutionalized aspect of gay male culture.
Although sparse in images documenting the gay community, pre-Stonewall gay male photography blurs the boundaries between art, erotica, and social history.
Given the historic stigma around making, circulating, and possessing overtly homoerotic images, the visual arts have been especially important for providing a socially sanctioned arena for depicting the naked male body and suggesting homoerotic desire.
Independent films that aggressively assert homosexual identity and queer culture, the New Queer Cinema can be seen as the culmination of several developments in American cinema.
Renowned photographer, teacher, critic, editor, and curator, Minor White created some of the most interesting photographs of male nudes of the second half of the twentieth century, but did not exhibit them for fear of scandal.
The first international fashion superstar, Halston dressed and befriended some of America's most glamorous women.
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.
Film, stage, and television actor Paul Winfield was openly gay in his private life, but maintained public silence about his homosexuality.
On October 13, 2011, on a vote of 48 to 44, the U.S. Senate confirmed the nomination of Alison Nathan to serve as a federal district judge in the Southern District of New York. When she is sworn in, Nathan will become the second openly lesbian judge on the federal bench.
Nathan is the second of four openly gay or lesbian nominees sent by President Obama to the Senate for confirmation to win approval. In July, the Senate confirmed the nomination of J. Paul Ontken, also to the Southern District of New York. Awaiting confirmation are Michael Fitzpatrick and Edward DuMont.
Nathan was opposed by Republican Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, who described her as an "activist judge." She was defended by Democratic Senator Charles Schumer of New York, who had recommended her appointment to President Obama.
Joe Solomonese of the Human Rights Campaign hailed Nathan's confirmation, saying that "Ms. Nathan's demonstrated intellect and dedication to public service is a model of achievement. She will join Judges Deborah Batts and Paul Oetken in the Southern District of New York as the only openly lesbian or gay federal judges. We look forward to the day when the makeup of the entire federal bench truly represents the diverse American public."
Nathan, who is a counselor to the New York State Solicitor General, served as a special assistant to President Obama and clerked for retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. She and her partner, law professor Meg Satterthwaite, are parents of twin sons.