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June 2013

The Queer Issue IV

Image: Eric Walter, "Demonstration in support of the bill of same-sex marriage, Paris," 2012 Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

This month we celebrate LGBT writing from around the world with the fourth installment of our annual Queer Issue. In two timely essays, Dmitry Kuzmin exposes the roots of recent anti–gay propaganda laws in Russia and Quentin Girard observes the protests against gay marriage in France. We also feature an excerpt from Tatiana Niculescu Bran's The Confession, the basis for the award-winning Romanian film Beyond the Hills. India's Vaishali Raode takes us into the world of Mumbai's hijra community, and Taiwanese poet Jing Xianghai looks through photos from an old relationship. And we present fiction from Jordan's Fadi Zaghmout, Cuba's Anna Lidia Vega Serova, Slovenia's Suzana Tratnik, and Austria's Josef Winkler. In a special section of Sri Lankan writing, Ru Freeman, the author of A Disobedient Girl, introduces us to the work of Simon Navagaththegama, Ariyawansa Ranaweera, and Kalaivaathy Kaleel.

An Introduction to Our Fourth Annual Queer Issue

The queer world is shaking.

The Opposing Shore

Blind to one another, two empires face off across a vast expanse

On the Moscow Metro and Being Gay

As long as the image of the enemy is being concocted out of gays, I must make all my public statements exclusively as a gay man.

from “The Confession”

As they wearied, the whips would fall from their hands.


To a Young Man Who Arrived at the Party Dressed in a Lady’s Fur

like some awesome Saturday night exotic dancer at the apocalypse


Lakshmi’s Story

What do we do? Do we kidnap children?

from “The Amman Bride”

That way we could both have our own family, but carry on seeing each other in secret.


Very Cheesy and Also Rather Blah

behind us a lake brimmed with the noise of crows


Letters without Envelopes

Her Swiss friend had assured her that she was no longer the only lesbian in Yugoslavia.


Harpooned Woman

We bit one another mercilessly.


from “The Graveyard of Bitter Oranges”

I implored him softly, Kill me! Kill me!


Book Reviews

Georges Perec’s “La Boutique Obscure”

Reviewed by Stefanie Sobelle

For Perec even the task of recording a dream becomes a demanding literary and intellectual game.

Adolfo Bioy Casares and Silvina Ocampo’s “Where There’s Love, There’s Hate”

Reviewed by Emma Garman

This unsung jewel of a novella by the decorated couple Adolfo Bioy Casares and Silvina Ocampo is a stylish, postmodern-inflected pastiche of an Agatha Christie mystery.

Recent Issues

Animal Kingdom

Our Nueva York: Writing the City in Spanish

The Language of Identity: Kaaps Writing from South Africa

Voices on the Verge: Writing from Southeast Asian Creole Languages

The Slow Burn of Inner Chaos: Writing from Malaysia

Backstories: Afro-Italian Women Writers

The Queer Issue XII

Movement and Multiplicity: Writing from Mauritania

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