Synopses & Reviews
is the biography of gay-rights giant Vito Russo, the man who wrote The Celluloid Closet: Homosexuality in the Movies
, commonly regarded as the foundational text of gay and lesbian film studies and one of the first to be widely read.and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160; But Russo was much more than a pioneering journalist and author. A founding member of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and cofounder of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP), Russo lived at the center of the most important gay cultural turning points in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. His life as a cultural Zelig intersects a crucial period of social change, and in some ways his story becomes the story of a developing gay revolution in America. A frequent participant at andldquo;zapsandrdquo; and an organizer of Gay Activists Alliance (GAA) cabarets and dancesandmdash;which gave the New York gay and lesbian community its first social alternative to Mafia-owned barsandmdash;Russo made his most enduring contribution to the GAA with his marshaling of andldquo;Movie Nights,andrdquo; the forerunners to his worldwide Celluloid Closet lecture tours that gave gay audiences their first community forum for the dissection of gay imagery in mainstream film.and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160; Biographer Michael Schiavi unravels Vito Russoandrsquo;s fascinating life story, from his childhood in East Harlem to his own heartbreaking experiences with HIV/AIDS. Drawing on archival materials, unpublished letters and journals, and more than two hundred interviews, including conversations with a range of Russoandrsquo;s friends and family from brother Charlie Russo to comedian Lily Tomlin to pioneering activist and playwright Larry Kramer, Celluloid Activist
provides an unprecedented portrait of a man who defined gay-rights and AIDS activism.
Best Special Interest Books, selected by the American Association of School Librarians
Best Books for General Audiences, selected by the Public Library Reviewers
Finalist, Gay Memoir/Biography, Lambda Literary Awards
Finalist, Over the Rainbow Selection, American Library Association
and#160;and#160;andldquo;Schiavi is thorough and compelling both in bringing this complex character to life and in delineating the people and events that shaped him. Highly Recommended.andrdquo;andmdash;CHOICE
andldquo;Schiavi tells a compelling story in this biographyandmdash;from his re-creation of life on the streets of East Harlem and in Greenwich Village of the 1960s and 1970s to the way he conveys Russoandrsquo;s excitement about his film research and popular education to his account of the AIDS years in New York City.andrdquo;andmdash;John Dandrsquo;Emilio, Italian American Reviewand#160;and#160;
Hailed for his humor and passion, the internationally acclaimed performance artist Tim Miller has delighted, shocked, and emboldened audiences all over the world. Body Blows
gathers six of Millers best-known performances that chart the sexual, spiritual, and political topography of his identity as a gay man: Some Golden States, Stretch Marks, My Queer Body, Naked Breath, Fruit Cocktail, and Glory Box. In Body Blows
, Tim Miller leaps from the stage to the page, as each performance script is illustrated with striking photographs and accompanied by Millers notes and comment.
This book explores the tangible body blowstaken and givenof Millers life and times as explored in his performances: the queer-bashers blow, the sweet blowing breath of a lover, the below-the-belt blow of HIV/AIDS, the psychic blows from a society that disrespects the humanity of lesbian and gay relationships. Millers performances are full of the put-up-your-dukes and stand-your-ground of such day-to-day blows that make up being gay in America
Betty Berzon, renowned psychotherapist and author of the bestselling book Permanent Partners
, tells her own incredible story here. Berzons journey from psychiatric patient on suicide watchher wrists tethered to the bed rails in a locked hospital wardto her present role as a groundbreaking therapist and gay pioneer makes for purely compelling reading.
Berzon is recognized today as a trailblazing co-founder of a number of important lesbian and gay organizations and one of the first therapists to focus on means of developing healthy gay relationships and overcoming homophobia. Her sometimes bumpy road to success never fails to fascinate. Along the way she encounters such luminaries as Anaïs Nin, Eleanor Roosevelt, the Sitwells, Evelyn Hooker, and Paul Monette. Her recollections here provide a collective portrait of her fellow pioneers and a stirring lesson in twentieth-century history.
It is, however, the intimate story of Berzons own private passage toward self-discoveryfrom mental breakdown and suicide attempts, through hospitalization, eventual triumphant recovery, and her own coming out as an open lesbian at the age of fortythat makes this memoir an urgent, insightful, and deeply emotional testament to human survival.
For a quarter century, Tim Miller has worked at the intersection of performance, politics, and identity, using his personal experiences to create entertaining but pointed explorations of life as a gay American manfrom the perils and joys of sex and relationships to the struggles of political disenfranchisement and artistic censorship. This intimate autobiographical collage of Miller's professional and personal life reveals one of the celebrated creators of a crucial contemporary art form and a tireless advocate for the American dream of political equality for all citizens.
Here we have the most complete Miller yeta raucous collection of his performance scripts, essays, interviews, journal entries, and photographs, as well as his most recent stage piece Us. This volume brings together the personal, communal, and national political strands that interweave through his work from its beginnings and ultimately define Miller's place as a contemporary artist, activist, and gay man.
The first critical biography of gay-rights activist Vito Russo. Celluloid Activist illuminates, through the life of this fascinating individual, some of the most explosive cultural revolutions in American history and significantly expands the fields of gay film studies, biography, and history.
About the Author
"Performance artist Tim Miller has been a pioneering and inspiring figure for twenty-five years. Taking us into the heart of his very original work, 1001 Beds
shows Miller as an engaged and effective storyteller and provocateur. It will attract readers from a variety of constituencies and be wonderful for classes."Lynn C. Miller, editor of Voices Made Flesh
"Tim Miller has made a career not only of making the personal political, but more important, of making the political personal. As a result, 1001 Beds is not just a document of life as a performance artist, but a history of performance art; it is not just the story of a gay man, but an account of how being gay has changed."David Bergman, series editor
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
List of Illustrationsand#160;and#160;and#160;
Introductionand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
1. Birth of a New Yorkerand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
2. Jersey Boyand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
3. Return of the Nativeand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
4. Birth of an Activistand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
5. andquot;Professional Movement Flash and Trashandquot;and#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
6. Building the Closetand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
7. andquot;A Time of Major Changeandquot;and#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
8. The Activist in Wartimeand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
Afterwordand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
Notesand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;
List of Interviewsand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;
Bibliographyand#160;and#160; and#160;and#160;and#160; and#160;