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LGBTQ + Media Representation for Pride Month – The Pioneer

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A curated list of movies, books and music to celebrate Pride Month
Through Scarlet schwenk, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Maha Sanad, SOCIAL MEDIA PUBLISHER Arlie Sarnicola, PHOTOGRAPHER

Pride month, the time to celebrate and promote the assertiveness of the social group that continues to fight for equality. Pride Month is held annually in June in commemoration of 1969 New York City Stonewall Riots. While diversity of representation is always important, it’s especially important to spotlight queer figures and stories during the month. From books and authors to films and artists, here’s our compilation of some of the defining works and people The Pioneer wanted to spotlight in honor of Pride Month:

Books / Authors

“The Song of Achilles” by Madeline Miller
A narrative of Greek myth based on Homer’s “The Iliad” follows Patroclus’ perspective, describing him with Achilles as lovers rather than friends or cousins, as other adaptations have done. Miller manages to write a gripping and moving story with a refreshing twist on a well-known story and even more well-known mythological historical figures. “The Song of Achilles” was recognized by the American Library Association as Stonewall Honor Book for its portrayal of LGTBTQ + characters.

“You should see me in a crown” by Leah Johnson
This first young adult novel by author Leah Johnson follows protagonist Liz Lighty to her small, ball-obsessed Midwestern town, where she feels like she’s not fitting in due to being poor, clumsy and black. This Sapphic story brings a twist to the Midwestern prom history with a queer black girl in the foreground. “You Should Me See in a Crown” has been called a “self-love anthem for queer black girls everywhere” by Good reading, in addition to receiving a Stonewall Book Honor.

“Felix Ever After” by Kacen Callender
This young adult novel follows a black transgender teenager, Felix Love, who tries to capture his identity by falling in love for the first time. While trying to uncover the identity of an anonymous troll who targets Felix for being transgender, readers follow Felix navigating his identity and his journey of self-discovery and self-acceptance. “Felix Ever After” received the Stonewall Honor Book Award for its portrayal of a young black transgender character.

“Giovanni’s Room” by James Baldwin
Baldwin’s novel resonated with the queer community for its documentation of a young man’s journey of love and desire as an expatriate in 1950s France. Despite significant changes since the 1950s, Baldwin’s thematic use of human experience remains strong in 2021 in America.

“The city of the night” by John Rechy
In the scandalized literary world, Rechy’s novel explores the world of drag, con artists and sex workers. The Doors were notably inspired by the novel, pushing the limits of what is “socially acceptable”.

“Oranges are not the only fruit” by Jeanette Winterstorn
The complexities of understanding sexual orientation associated with religion make this a compelling coming-out story. Jeanette, growing up evangelical, finds her sexuality throughout the novel, creating a division in her family’s plans.

Sabine Khan
Sabina Khan is an author whose books focus on Muslim teens straddling different cultures. Two of her novels, “The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali” and “Zara Hossain is Here,” tell the stories of two young gay Muslim women who struggle to feel accepted in their conservative communities in addition to immigrant struggles. in America. Khan has a unique ability to create stories about intersectional struggles and difficulties, but also to present the journey to self-discovery of his characters.

Adiba Jaigirdar
Adiba Jaigirdar is a writer with two books, “The Henna Wars” and “Hani Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating,” which follow characters who struggle with crippling members of their community and even trying to erase their queer identity. With the two books following young brunette women in their quest for their identities, these books are perfect for anyone who wants to diversify their reading by taking a look at the life and intersectional struggles of queer POCs.

Sarah Waters
“Tipping the Velvet” is a beautifully written coming-of-age story about Nancy ‘Nan’ Astley, a young working-class girl from Kent, Michigan, who falls in love with a performing woman. on vaudeville stages dressed as a man. . The story tells of Nan’s transformation from a small town girl working in her family’s oyster restaurant to a proud young woman who travels the world with hard-earned confidence and a heart on her sleeve. It’s tragic, erotic, beautiful, and sometimes deeply, universally, relatable. Readers will be supporting Nan on every page of this book, as she triumphs over her grief and finds out who she is and what she wants in the end.

Movies / TV Shows

“Paris is Burning” Jennie Livingston (1990)
The documentary highlights prom culture in New York and chronicles the movement and involvement of under-represented groups (Latinx, African-Americans, LGBTQ + community). Alternating between footage of drag performances and interviews with a number of well-known performers on the scene, the documentary explored the inner workings of the ballroom scene, the slang, the various “houses” to which the performers belong. and their experiences with sexism, racism and homophobia. It’s a beautiful, sobering and historically significant work that illuminates a scene that became a lifeline for many members of New York’s LGBTQ community at the time.

“Pose” (2018-present)
Drawing inspiration from underground balloon culture, the show explores the balloon’s “mothers of the house” and pays homage to the legends who made balloon culture a safe space. Filled with glitter and glamor, the show tackles intersectional LGBTQ + issues, bringing awareness and historic precision to the ballroom community.

“Portrait of a Lady on Fire” Céline Sciamma (2019)
In the French film, Marriane, a young painter, sets out on a journey to paint the wedding portrait of Heloise as she leaves her convent. Marriane must discreetly study Héloïse because she does not know that Marriane was hired to do her portrait. The beautifully shot film develops slowly, like a slow burn leading to the final events.

“Hearts of the Desert” Donna Deitch (1985)
This romantic drama follows a divorced professor who finds himself in Reno, Nevada, falling in love with another woman as his previous marriage comes to an end. A charming film which is known and loved for being one of the first lesbian films that did not end in stereotypical tragedy.

“Kill Eve” (2 seasons, 2018-2022)
An MI6 intelligence officer (Sandra Oh) sets out to find a ruthless global assassin (Jodie Comer) and, in the heat of the chase, begins to fall in love with the stylish killer. A clever, sometimes hilariously unexpected, thriller that will have you watching all 24 episodes so far. Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer give incredibly nuanced and dimensional performances of two of the most complex characters written for television in recent years.

“Betty” (2 seasons, 2020-present)
Sincere, hilarious and inspiring, Betty centers around a group of four skaters living in New York City.

Music

St. Vincent
The new wave rock artist plans to release more music in 2021, available on all streaming platforms. Recommended for those who like Mitski, Angel Olsen, Grimes and Florence + the Machine.

Dijon honey
The Berlin-based DJ and producer creates classic house music similar to The Blessed Madonna. Recommended for those who prefer classical house music.

King princess
Pop artist King Princess plans to release music in 2021, pairing each song with a themed gay-centric clip. Similar to: Lorde, Billie Ellish and Dua Lipa.

Brock hampton
Rap group’s queer frontman Kevin Abstract has released a statement that the group will produce more music in 2021. Similar to: SOB x RBE and Shoreline Mafia.

Trans Trenderz
The new music producers seek to uplift young Black Trans people through their work, by launching a new label called “Trans Trenderz”. Rapper Jupiter Gray has released music with this label before, in addition to Jæ, a singer-songwriter.

The Internet
Anchored by the soft voice of queer icon Syd tha Kyd (of Odd Future fame), The Internet mixes jazz, r & b, hip hop and funk. Similar to: Ravyn Lenae, KAYTRANADA, Thundercat.

FLETCHER
Curry Elise Fletcher has been writing her idiosyncratically catchy pop breakup songs since 2019. Her vocals shine throughout her ep “You Ruined New York City For Me”, reaching the limits of her lineup from the very first song. Similar to: Carlie Hanson, Lennon Stella.

Jay Som
Jay Som is the solo project of Oakland-based Melina Duterte. She writes and produces all of her work, which could best be described as a lush mix of shoegaze and dream pop. Similar to: Japanese Breakfast, Alvvays.

Hayley Kiyoko
Although known to some as a former Disney Channel star, Kiyoko has grown into a multi-talented artistic force, writing and producing her own catchy pop songs as well as directing her music videos. Similar to: Halsey, Princess Royal.

Christine and the queens
French artist Heloise Letissier’s solo project, Christine, and the Queens is a queer producer, singer-songwriter and choreographer. The subject matter of her music is varied, ranging from love, loss and desire to play with the gender roles that she also expresses through the costumes and choreography of her live performances. Similar to: Robyn, Shura, Empress of.

Media representation and visibility are imperative to foster a safe and inclusive environment. Those with personal identity issues are seen during this month. The Pioneer honors and recognizes the countless lives lost to violence against the LGBTQ + community. We condemn states pushing anti-LGBTQ + legislation and urge readers to contact their local representatives.

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