Tag Archives: LGBT

Peirce, Kimberly (dir). Boys Don’t Cry

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In Falls City, Nebraska, Brandon Teena arrives to start a new future for himself. The local community falls for his charms and everyone becomes drawn to his innocence and wit. However, behind the charming persona is a totally different person – Brandon is actually a woman. After falling for a local karaoke singer, Brandon moves in with her family and wins them over. But when Brandon’s secret is finally out, the rest of the family all turn against him, branding him sick and evil.

Directed: Kimberly Peirce
Written: Andy Bienen, Kimberly Peirce
Year: 1999

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Sebold, Alice. The Lovely Bones.

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“My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973. My murderer was a man from our neighborhood. My mother liked his border flowers, and my father talked to him once about fertilizer.”

This is Susie Salmon. Watching from heaven, Susie sees her happy, suburban family devastated by her death, isolated even from one another as they each try to cope with their terrible loss alone. Over the years, her friends and siblings grow up, fall in love, do all the things she never had the chance to do herself. But life is not quite finished with Susie yet . . . The Lovely Bones is a luminous and astonishing novel about life and death, forgiveness and vengeance, memory and forgetting – but, above all, about finding light in the darkest of places.

Publisher: Picador
Year: 2003
ISBN-10: 0330485385

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Bennett, Alan. Untold Stories

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“Untold Stories contains significant previously unpublished work, including a poignant memoir of his family and of growing up in Leeds, together with his much celebrated diary for the years 1996-2004, and numerous other exceptional essays, reviews and comic pieces. Bennett, as always, is both amusing and poignant, whether he’s discussing his modest childhood or his work with figures such as Maggie Smith, Thora Hird and John Gielgud.”

Publisher: Faber & Faber
Year: 2006
ISBN-10: 0571228313

Sacks, Oliver. On the Move: A Life.

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When Oliver Sacks was twelve years old, a perceptive schoolmaster wrote in his report: ‘Sacks will go far, if he does not go too far’. It is now abundantly clear that Sacks has never stopped going. From its opening pages on his youthful obsession with motorcycles and speed, On the Move is infused with his restless energy. As he recounts his experiences as a young neurologist in the early 1960s, first in California and then in New York, where he discovered a long-forgotten illness in the back wards of a chronic hospital, as well as with a group of patients who would define his life, it becomes clear that Sacks’s earnest desire for engagement has occasioned unexpected encounters and travels – sending him through bars and alleys, over oceans, and across continents.

‘On the Move’ is the story of a brilliantly unconventional physician and writer – and of the man who has illuminated the many ways that the brain makes us human.

Publisher: Picador
Year: 2015
ISBN-10: 1447264045

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Gunn, T. The Man with Night Sweats

Thom Gunn’s The Man With Night Sweats shows him writing at the height of his powers… The book ends with a set of poems about the deaths of friends from AIDS. With their unflinching directness, compassion and grace, they are among the most moving statements yet to have been provoked by the disease.

Author: Gunn,Thom
Title: The Man with Night Sweats
Publisher: Faber and Faber
Year: 1992
ISBN: 0571162576

Winterson, J. Oranges are not the only fruit

This is the story of Jeanette, adopted and brought up by her mother as one of God’s elect. Zealous and passionate, she seems destined for life as a missionary, but then she falls for one of her converts. At sixteen, Jeanette decides to leave the church, her home and her family, for the young woman she loves. Innovative, punchy and tender, “Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit” is a few days ride into the bizarre outposts of religious excess and human obsession.

Author: Winterson,Jeanette

Publisher: Vintage
Year: 1991
ISBN: 0099935708

Winterson Jeanette. Why be Happy when you could be Normal?

This book is the story of a life’s work to find happiness. It is a book full of stories: about a girl locked out of her home, sitting on the doorstep all night; about a tyrant in place of a mother, who has two sets of false teeth and a revolver in the duster drawer, waiting for Armageddon; about growing up in an northern industrial town now changed beyond recognition, part of a community now vanished; about the Universe as a Cosmic Dustbin. It is the story of how the painful past Jeanette Winterson thought she had written over and repainted returned to haunt her later life, and sent her on a journey into madness and out again, in search of her real mother. It is also a book about other people’s stories, showing how fiction and poetry can form a string of guiding lights, a life-raft which supports us when we are sinking.

Publisher: Jonathan Cape
Year: 2011
ISBN-10: 0224093452

Walker, A. The Color Purple

Set in the deep American south between the wars, this is the classic tale of Celie, a young poor black girl. Raped repeatedly by her father, she loses two children and then is married off to a man who treats her no better than a slave. She is separated from her sister Nettie and dreams of becoming like the glamorous Shug Avery, a singer and rebellious black woman who has taken charge of her own destiny. Gradually Celie discovers the support of women that enables her to leave the past behind and begin a new life. 

Author: Walker, Alice
Title: The Color Purple
Publisher: Phoenix
Year: 2004
ISBN: 0753818922

DVDs available on loan

 

Demme, Jonathan (dir). Philadelphia

Mike Hardey HYMS: Inspired by a true story about a lawyer who has AIDS and is also gay. Taking on stereotypes and prevailing fears of HIV and AIDS, Philadelphia delves into the struggle with disease and the subsequent loss of his job. Captures the attitudes of the times and attempts to break down barriers.

Director:Jonathan Demme
Studio: Columbia/Tristar
Year: 1994

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I’ve also posted ‘The Streets of Philadelphia‘ by Bruce Springsteen, taken from the soundtrack album.