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 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.