(Erika, writing on behalf of the Ivory Tower Boiler Room team,)
One of my favorite parts of being part of the Ivory Tower team is getting to sit around with my friends and have the kind of deep, intense conversations like the ones that happen in the middle of the night at summer camp, or sitting around a dorm room in college. This month’s Round Table was no different. I sat down with three people I really enjoy spending time with and got to talk intensely about some topics we all care about, and to really listen and learn from them, and to share my own stories and my own experiences. I hope you enjoy getting to peek in on our conversations, too…just wait until we show you some of our Facebook chats or the aftershow though.
Unsurprisingly, we sit down with a plan and a few questions, and an estimated time frame, and of course, that all is quickly forgotten, so today we bring you part I of our Pride Round Table where we welcome you all to The Ivory Tower Boiler Room’s Pride month celebration and what that means to each of us (Adam, Andrew, Erika, and Mary). We offer our own positionality and explain how we’re checking in during Pride. Then, we get into a discussion about LGBTQ+ media and leave you all hanging on “when each of us discovered LGBTQ+ Lit. as a category.”
You’ll have to wait a little longer to hear more about us and our books though. We do need time to write, too…someone’s got to keep books on the shelves.
As always, here are some links you might want to check out:
Vital Thoughts-a place for short courses taught by experts on all kinds of interesting topics. Andrew will be teaching a two session course on Queer Poetics here this summer.
An Introduction to the Beat Poets-several of us are fans of the Beat Poets. In the roundtable we talk about reading Beat Poetry as some of the earliest “mature content” we read, as well a a little bit about obscenity and how the impression of what it is has changed over time.
Pose on FX-Pose is an excellent show, in it’s third (and sadly, final season) focusing on the Black and Latino gender non-conforming and LGBTQ houses of New York’s ballroom scene of the 1980s and early 1990s. The show touches on topics including chosen family, homophobia, HIV and more, and has made great effort to cast transgender and gender nonconforming performers to play those roles in the show.
Matt Baume’s YouTube Channel-Matt Baume hosts excellent videos about LGBTQ portrayals in media, as well as writing about Geek Culture for Seattle’s “The Stranger” and hosting an entertainment podcast (“Sewers of Paris”) where he talks with gay men about the entertainment that changed their lives.
The Klein Sexual Orientation Grid-Many of us are familiar with the very linear Kinsey Scale, which allows us to consider our sexual orientation along a number line from 0 (totally heterosexual) to 6 (totally homosexual.) The Klein Grid allows us to explore our sexuality based on both behavior and fantasy and to consider our past, our present and our ideal situations. It provides a more in depth, more nuanced picture of what we know about our sexual orientation.
The Sex and Gender Debate-we do discuss sex and gender in this episode, and we are not experts on these topics. We do our best to ensure that any misinformation we hear is corrected during the discussion, but it’s entirely possible we missed something; that happens when there are four of us and we sometimes talk all at the same time. I encourage you to read the information at this link for more accurate and easier to understand or to follow discussion than our conversation may be.
Two poems about HIV/AIDS are mentioned during the roundtable. One is Tim Dlugos’s piece G-9, and the other is sam sax’s (one of my favorite contemporary poets, so I am extra-thrilled to share this with you,) poem On PrEP or on Prayer [“spare us your burial rites”].
Happy listening. Leave us a comment here after you’ve listened, or come visit us on Facebook or Twitter.