Although gay, lesbian, and queer theory are related practices, the three terms delineate separate emphases marked by different assumptions about the relationship between gender and sexuality.
The Harlem Renaissance, an African-American literary movement of the 1920s and 1930s, included several important gay and lesbian writers.
Oscar Wilde is important both as an accomplished writer and as a symbolic figure who exemplified a way of being homosexual at a pivotal moment in the emergence of gay consciousness.
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.
Conflicted over his own sexuality, Tennessee Williams wrote directly about homosexuality only in his short stories, his poetry, and his late plays.
Erotic and pornographic works have been written in many cultures since ancient times and recently have flourished with the relaxation of censorship.
Feminist literary theory is a complex, dynamic area of study that draws from a wide range of critical theories.
James Baldwin, a pioneering figure in twentieth-century literature, wrote sustained and articulate challenges to American racism and mandatory heterosexuality.
Virginia Spencer Carr.
Virginia Spencer Carr, a literary scholar best known for her biographies of Carson McCullers and Paul Bowles, died on April 10, 2012 at her home in Lynn, Massachusetts. Carr's 1975 biography of McCullers, The Lonely Hunter, remains the standard work on the writer's life.
Carr's biographies of McCullers, John Dos Passos, and Paul Bowles were characterized by exhaustive research and attention to detail, particularly in discovering the sources of literary works in the experiences of the authors.
After receiving her Ph.D. from Florida State University, Carr taught at a number of colleges and universities, but was especially associated with Georgia State University, where she taught for two decades.
Carr is survived by her partner Mary E. Robbins, three daughters, and seven grandchildren.