Black Lesbian Lit Virtual Book Club is On


(Books Published by Red Bone Press)

Starting July 1, 2009,  Swandiver will be hosting a discussion of lesbian literature by and about African descended authors.  The books are varied throughout our shared diaspora and include the first lesbian authored & lesbian character driven Dominican American novel in English: Erzulie’s Skirt,  as well as many titles from black lesbian run press Red Bone Press and the first publishers to focus exclusively on women of color authored literature in Canada, Sister Vision Press. The later was co-founded by another one of the authors in the list, Makeda Silvera, and Stephanie Martin. Sharon Bridgforth, another personal fave, is also on the list of readings.  I’m very excited to (re)read many of these texts and bump up their sales. And I will admit to suggesting several Red Bone Press books for the purpose of driving traffic to a black owned lesbian press that was founded to fill a need in the gigantic queer lit market. Lisa C. Moore is an amazing person and dedicated author, editor, and thinker. It is both an exciting and telling by product of this reading group that most of these books are published by small, independent, feminist and/or lesbian, publishers and I want to strongly recommend that those of you out there ordering books regularly consider ordering from people who actually have a diverse, feminist, and queer publishing history or who have endeavored to represent the voices that other publishers, including independents, have failed to publish in any significant way. It doesn’t have to be these folks mentioned in the post, but you know, I’ve bought books from most of them and absolutely love working with them to fill class book orders or just chat about upcoming literary events or forthcoming titles.

I’ll be reposting extended versions of my comments over there as posts here so you all can read along. Please participate if you are at all interested in the topic. And for all my academic readers who seem hard pressed to find people other than Lorde and Anzaldua to teach, here’s your chance . . .

Happy Pride y’all!

  1. Passing for Black by Linda VillarosaBLack Lesbian Network
  2. The Heart Does Not Bend by Makeda Silvera
  3. Ezulie’s Skirt by Ana Maurine Lara
  4. Does Your Mama Know? edited by Lisa C. Moore
  5. Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde
  6. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  7. The Other Side Of Paradise (A Memoir) by Staceyann Chin
  8. The Serpent’s Gift by Helen Elaine Lee
  9. The Bull-Jean Stories by Sharon Bridgeforth
  10. Callaloo and Other Lesbian Love Tales by LaShonda K. Barnett
  11. Love Like Gumbo by Nancy Rawles
  12. Crawfish Dreams by Nancy Rawles
  13. Water In A Broken Glass by Odessa Rose
  14. The Gilda Stories by Jewelle Gomez

I look forward to seeing you all each month over at Swandiver’s and here (‘cos you know I’m wordy & it wouldn’t be fair to monopolize discussion in someone else’s spot) at the start of each month. 😀

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