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Anti-Prom 2011

Check out great coverage of this year's Anti-Prom on Fox 5 News and in the New York Times: Read More ›

Celebrating 100 Years: The Centennial Exhibition

One of the notable themes in the Library's current Centennial exhibition is Gay and Lesbian history.  Items on view include GMHC's safe sex packets, early issues of the lesbian journal The Ladder,  a pamphlet from the Mattachine Society, and a signed copy of Wilde's Ballad of Reading Gaol. Check out the exhibition curator, Thomas Mellins, discussing Ballad of Reading Gaol, as well as an important print documenting early feminist movements in England. ... Read More ›

Scott Matthew in Concert!

Please join us the evening of April 20,2011, when singer and lyricist Scott Matthew plays a special concert at the Tompkins Square Branch Library.

Describing the lush informal beauty of his music, Glitterhouse Records says: “Scott Matthew’s music has truth and exigency. And he forms this into songs that are purely magnetic, that expose an honest beauty and sorrow, allowing listeners to take and feel part of the experience.”  Matthew’s most recent album is THERE IS Read More ›

An Artist Dialogue - Lyle Ashton Harris and Chuck Close


Tonight: Wednesday, March 23, 2011, 6 p.m.

Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, Margaret Liebman Berger Forum

First come, first served

FREE - Doors open at 5:30 p.m.

 Widely known for his self-portraiture and explorations of identity in his photographs, videos, and performances, artist Lyle Ashton Harris has spent the last decade creating a monumental series of sepia-toned portraits with the large-format 

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Celebrating James Baldwin at the Schomburg Center Tonight!


 Head up to the Schomburg Center tonight for the opening sessions and amazing concert of multi-site conference sponsored by New York University, the New York Public Library's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Brecht Forum, and the Studio Museum of Harlem.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 2011, 5:30PMThe Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture,Langston Hughes Auditorium, NYPL515 Malcolm X Boulevard (@135th Street), NY, NYOpening Reception: 5:30pm-6:15pm...Opening Plenary Roundtable: Read More ›

Elizabeth Bishop Centenary

 Reading through all the events and comments today on the 100th anniversary of Elizabeth Bishop's birth, I'm struck by the quietness around Bishop's sexuality. This is doubtlessly due to Bishop's own discretion in her work.  Despite the passion and loss communicated through her art, outright eroticism was rare in her work. One gorgeous exception is "Vague Poem" in the posthumous collection of her unpublished poems Edgar Allan Poe & the Juke-Box: ... Read More ›

Love Speaks its Name

  The trouble with Valentine's Day ( or one of the troubles...) is the paucity of compelling images of LGBT lives and loves in all the hustle of red roses, pink love notes, and chocolate bonbons. If you are looking for inspiring words and thoughts on love, check out the poetry collection Love Speaks Its Name: Gay and Lesbian Love Poems edited by J. D. McClatchy. It has a beautiful arc of language ranging from Sappho to John Weiners. My favorite is a quiet gem called "Fable" by Robin Becker: 

…The story got 

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Happy Birthday Gertrude Stein

 "To be regularly gay was to do every day the gay thing that they did every day. To be regularly gay was to end every day at the same time after they had been regularly gay. They were regularly gay. They were gay every day. They ended every day in the same way, at the same time, and they had been every day regularly gay." Gertrude Stein. "Miss Furr and Miss Skeene." The Penguin Book of Lesbian Short Stories edited by Margaret Reynolds. To celebrate Gertrude Stein's birthday today, born February 3rd 1874, check out these Read More ›

Colm Tóibín’s The Empty Family


This Thursday,  February 3rd, Calm Tóibín discusses his new book, The Empty Family, with Paul Holdengraber for LIVE from the NYPL.

Calm Tóibín’s new collection of short stories, The Empty Family, demonstrates a profound understanding of human fragility and resilience – and the price we pay for 

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Stonewall Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award

Last week at the 2011 ALA Mid-Winter meeting in San Diego, the Stonewall Children's and Young Adult Literature Awards were announced as part of the ALA youth media awards. The award is given annually to English-language children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered experience. This year's winner is Almost Perfect by Brian Katcher.  This groundbreaking young adult novel depicts the troubled Read More ›

Hide/Seek Video

In case you were unable to attend the Library's standing-room-only talk by Hide/Seek curators Jonathan D. Katz and David C. Ward, check out the video online through our website:Read More ›

Hide/Seek: Seeing and Speaking Sexuality in the Museum



Hide/Seek is a groundbreaking show, the first major museum exhibition to focus on sexual difference in the making of modern American portraiture, currently on view at the National Portrait Gallery. “Hide/Seek” considers such themes as the role of sexual difference in depicting modern America; how artists explored the fluidity of sexuality and gender; how major themes in modern art—especially 

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Take Care of Your Blessings: Items from the Essex Hemphill/Wayson Jones Collection


Take Care of Your Blessings: Items from the Essex Hemphill/Wayson Jones CollectionNovember 3-13, 2010Black Gay & Lesbian Archive Project

Manuscripts, Archives and Rare BooksDivisionSchomburgCenter for Research in Black CultureNew York Public Library

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Special One-Day Exhibit of GMHC Records September 22nd

 The New York Public Library’s Manuscripts and Archives Division is pleased to announce the opening of the records of the Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC). The collection comprises 170 linear feet of GMHC records, chiefly dating from 1982 to 1999, including correspondence, memoranda, minutes, reports and brochures that document all aspects of the organization’s activities. Also of particular interest is the nearly 1,000 video recordings of interviews with founders and early members of the Read More ›

Happy Birthday Mae West

Mae West. On Stage and Screen: Photograph File of the Billy Rose Theatre Collection

Today is the 118th anniversary of Mae West's birth, although I doubt she'd admit it. As West quipped — "You're never too old to become younger." West was a delightfully controversial performer who got her start in vaudeville before moving to the New York stage 

... Read More ›

Discovering the LGBT Library: The Firehouse

While perusing the digital collections for pictures for my post on LGBT protest pre-Stonewall, I came across a photo that made me instantly happy:The sheer joy on that man's face is palpable and his shirt is pretty fabulous too.The photo is in a collection from Diana Davies, taken in 1971. The photo caption reads: Okay, what is the Gay Activist Read More ›

Discovering the LGBT Library: The March on Albany

While perusing the digital collections for images from the 1970 Christopher Street Liberation March, I came across pictures from another event that seemed to be just as enthusiastic and amazing --- the March on Albany in 1971.

Oddly enough, I had never heard of the March on Albany so I decided to do a little bit of research.  After checking out the LGBT Life with Full Text Database 

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As this weekend rolls around, LGBT people all around the city are getting their costumes, chants and rainbow paraphernalia together to celebrate Pride 2010. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the very first pride march (then called Christopher Street Liberation March) in 1970.We've examined the events and protests leading up to the Christopher Street Liberation March but haven't yet gotten the chance to look at the event that occurred immediately afterwords.After the march from Waverly Street, up Sixth Avenue, the crowd of thousands (quite an Read More ›

Video Verite a Hit!

The Fourth Annual Drag Video Verite Festival played to a full-house as drag queens, drag kings, other gender-variant folks and their admirers packed into the Bruno Walter Auditorium at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.The evening began with a slide show of drag portraits by Leee Black Childers with live piano accompaniment and arrangement by Jacqueline Jonee.  Jonee entered in a lavishing zebra-print dress, hat and bag ensemble toting a stuffed Pomeranian who she instructed to "stay" during her performance.Following the portraits, Joe E. Jeffreys, the producer and editor Read More ›

The Many Faces of Stonewall

Anyone who knows anything about LGBT history has heard of the Stonewall Riots.  Often cited as the start of the gay rights revolution and the first time LGBT people fought back against the oppressive governmental systems. In fact, some say Stonewall is to the LGBT movement what Rosa Parks is to the Civil Rights movement.  In 2004, author David Carter published a book about Stonewall, called Stonewall: The Riots that Sparked the Gay Revolution.

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