social sciences
special features
about glbtq

Advertising Opportunities
Press Kit
Research Guide
Terms of Service
Privacy Policy
site guide
search tips
research guide
editors & contributors
contact us
send feedback
write the editor
Subscribe to our free e-mail newsletter to receive a spotlight on glbtq culture every month.
e-mail address:
Popular Topics in Literature
García Lorca, Federico García Lorca, Federico
The works of García Lorca, internationally recognized as Spain's most prominent lyric poet and dramatist of the twentieth century, are filled with thinly veiled homosexual motifs and themes.
Musical Theater
There has always been homosexual involvement in American musical theatre and a homosexual sensibility even in straight musicals, and recently the Broadway musical has welcomed openly homosexual themes and situations.
Michelangelo Buonarroti Michelangelo Buonarroti
Best known for his genius in art and architecture, Michelangelo was also an accomplished author of homoerotic poetry.
African-American Literature: Gay Male African-American Literature: Gay Male
The African-American gay male literary tradition consists of a substantial body of texts and includes some of the most gifted writers of the twentieth century.
Camp Camp
Combining elements of incongruity, theatricality, and exaggeration, camp is a form of humor that helps homosexuals cope with a hostile environment.
Hughes, Langston Hughes, Langston
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.
Baldwin, James Arthur Baldwin, James Arthur
James Baldwin, a pioneering figure in twentieth-century literature, wrote sustained and articulate challenges to American racism and mandatory heterosexuality.
Wilde, Oscar Wilde, Oscar
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.
Topics In the News
The Gaying of Washington, D. C.
Posted by: Claude J. Summers on 11/18/13
Last updated on: 11/18/13
Bookmark and Share

A fascinating story in the Fashion & Style section of the November 17, 2013 New York Times reports on how Washington, D.C. transitioned from a deeply closeted city to the "gayest place in America."

In his first-person story, supplemented by interviews with numerous other D.C. residents and citing demographic information from the Census Bureau, Jeremy W. Peters recounts how the nation's capital has undergone a profound change over the last decade. When he first arrived in Washington as a summer intern ten years ago, he noticed that there were a lot of gay people in the city, including in high government positions, but "instead of being widely accepted, they were usually whispered about derisively, suspect characters to be mocked and maligned."

Now, however, Peters says, "I . . . live in the gayest place in America."

Robert Raben, an assistant attorney general during the Clinton administration, tells Peters, "There's an openly gay presence that makes you think you're in the Castro or West Hollywood," but adds, "it wasn't always the case. The federal government was a nightmare for homosexuals for decades, and then it wasn't."

A crucial factor in the change that took place is that under President Clinton the federal government ended the practice of denying security clearance to people known to be gay or lesbian. Finally, government employees were freed from the necessity of inventing a web of lies about their personal lives. They could come out.

Political lobbyists such as Hilary Rosen, Fred Saenz, and Richard Socarides recall their experiences having to worry about how honest they could be. But the necessity to hide extended beyond government officials. Sean Bugg, executive director of the Next Generation Leadership Foundation and editor emeritus of Metro Weekly, recounts how reporters were equally frightened of exposure, particular at a time when "the military was still doing surveillance in gay bars."

Peters considers the question of whether gay men and lesbians are drawn to Washington because they are attracted to politics in disproportionately high numbers.

This video accompanies the story:

Related Encyclopedia Entries
browse:   arts   literature   social-sciences   discussion boards
learn more about glbtq       contact us       advertise on glbtq.com
Bookmark and Share

glbtq™ and its logo are trademarks of glbtq, Inc.
This site and its contents Copyright © 2002-2015, glbtq, Inc.

Your use of this site indicates that you accept its Terms of Service.