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.
On October 5, 2011, San Diego State University announced that, beginning in 2012, it will offer a major in lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender studies.
SDSU joins Hobart & William Smith College as one of only two colleges in the nation to offer an undergraduate major in lgbt studies, although a number of other schools offer majors in gender or sexuality studies in which glbtq studies are prominently included, and many more offer a minor, certificate, or concentration in the field.
The first Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Studies department was established at the City College of San Francisco in 1989; other early programs included the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies at the City University of New York and the Lesbian and Gay Studies Center at Yale University.
Other pioneering schools in the field include Amherst College, Brown University, Carleton College, Indiana University, New York University, Rice University, San Francisco State University, University of Chicago, and University of Michigan.
SDSU has offered a minor in LGBT studies since 2009, and the new major builds on the university's strength in the field. "We had so many courses on LGBT issues in so many departments, a group of us got together to put together a major," Esther Rothblum, professor of Women's Studies and the LGBT Studies academic advisor, told Pat Flynn of the San Diego Union-Tribune.
She added that the major will put no extra burden on the university which, like all public higher education institutions in California, is dealing with a sharp reduction in state funding. "The fabulous thing about this is it isn't costing the university a dollar," she said. "The classes and the faculty are all there."
Campus Pride, a nonprofit group focused on making college campuses safe and inviting for glbtq students, has recognized SDSU as among the best colleges in the country for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.