“The 9”. Queer News Weekly Curated. Uganda Legislation, Judith Butler Interviewed and the Queerest Oscars

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As usual… 5.5 minutes to read. A weekly digest of the most important queer news in your backyard!  Exclusively for paid subscribers every Monday, “The 9” is curated weekly by Taylor Abbot + the GenZ editorial team.

If you want to hear the most important news commented on in-depth, you can listen to our podcast, GenClash: Queer Perspectives on Current Affairs. The first episode is set to be launched on March 21, 0 3.00 CEST.

This week, the most diverse Oscars, and then:

France. Art. Parisian Exhibition and Book Celebrates the Work of Famous Pornographer Jean-Daniel Cadinot.

A new exhibition at the Au Bonheur du Jour gallery honours the legacy of Jean-Daniel Cadinot (1944-2008), a French director of emblematic pornographic gay films, producer, and photographer who played a significant role in the LGBT+ rights movement. Titled Photographies VINTAGE des années 1973 /1980 (Vintage Photographs from the 1970s/1980s), the exhibition showcases Cadinot’s photographic work from his early career. These images, created between 1973 and 1980, offer a glimpse into a period when his work challenged societal norms and discriminatory laws surrounding sexuality. Cadinot’s career began in photography, capturing portraits of prominent musicians like Patrick Juvet. However, his later endeavours ventured into gay porn filmmaking, where he translated “gay fantasies” into narratives exploring themes of desire, pleasure, and liberation. These films often depicted settings like leisure camps and adventurous trips, pushing the boundaries of the time. The exhibition is running until the 20th of April and coincides with the publication of the artist’s biography Sous l’objectif de/Under the lens of Cadinot by Hors Champs, an independent publishing house devoted to the underground, the cultural margins and homosexuality. You can read an extensive review of the exhibition in GAY45.

Australia. Politics. Aussie Mardi Gras Marked by Pro-Palestinian Protest Arrests.

Eight individuals were arrested during Sydney’s Mardi Gras parade for alleged attempts to disrupt the event with a pro-Palestinian demonstration. Police reported the group, composed of a 25-year-old man and seven women aged 29-42, entered the parade route carrying a banner advocating for Palestinian causes. They were charged with “more than three people using violence to cause fear” and additional charges for the man possessing a prohibited signal flare. All received conditional bail and court appearances in late March. Reports indicate the protesters attempted to advance ahead of New South Wales Premier Chris Minns, holding a banner proclaiming “Queer Solidarity with Palestine Resistance.” They allegedly fled upon police intervention while wielding lit flares, leading to physical apprehension. Despite the incident, the parade continued uninterrupted. This event overshadowed the traditional opening of the parade featuring the motorbike group Dykes on Bikes, who held a moment of silence at Taylor Square in honour of recently deceased community members, Jesse Baird and Luke Davies. The memory of Baird and Davies was present throughout the parade, with tributes displayed on the Qantas float and the Sydney Swans participants wearing black armbands. A separate vigil held the previous night gathered dignitaries and community members to pay their respects.

Greece. Rights. Couple Makes History in First Same-Sex Marriage.

Stavros Gavriliadis and Dimitris Elefsiniotis tied the knot on March 2nd in Nea Smyrni, South Athens, becoming the first same-sex couple to marry in Greece after the country legalized such unions. The pair, together for 20 years and sharing three children, supported the marriage equality bill passed in February, making Greece the first Orthodox Christian nation to allow same-sex marriage and adoption. Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis congratulated the couple on their historic union, with Gavriliadis stating he will now formally adopt his husband’s twins. Their wedding signifies a pivotal moment for LGBT+ rights in Greece, attracting overseas couples seeking similar ceremonies in the picturesque country. In a reactionary move, the Greek Orthodox Church banned politicians who voted to legalise gay marriage.

The USA. Film. Queer Comedian Julio Torres Makes Directorial Debut in Problemista.

Comedian, actor, and filmmaker Julio Torres’s first feature film, Problemista, will hit theatres on March 22nd. The movie follows Alejandro (played by Torres), a Salvadoran aspiring toy designer struggling to find success in New York City. Facing a visa expiration, he takes a job assisting a quirky art world figure (played by Tilda Swinton) in hopes of staying and achieving his dream. The cast also features RZA, Isabella Rossellini, Larry Owens, Catalina Saavedra, Greta Lee, and James Scully. Torres aimed to capture the specific experience of living in New York, avoiding an overly glamorous portrayal on screen. He emphasized the film’s realistic portrayal, stating, “I hate seeing how glossy New York City can be sometimes on TV. Give me stains! Please, just make it feel natural!” Before directing Problemista, Torres was a writer on Saturday Night Live from 2016 to 2019, collaborating with cast member Bowen Yang on notable sketches like “Sara Lee” with Harry Styles and “Papyrus.” He also co-created and starred in the HBO series Los Espookys alongside Ana Fabrega and Fred Armisen. Problemista offers moviegoers a chance to experience Torres’s distinct comedic vision and storytelling on the big screen.

Uganda. Politics. Member of the Parlament Denied US Visa for Anti-LGBT+ Stance.

Ugandan Member of Parliament Sarah Achieng Opendi has been denied a visa to attend a UN meeting in New York. This follows her public advocacy for castrating homosexuals during a debate on Uganda’s harsh anti-LGBT+ legislation. Opendi expressed surprise at the US embassy’s decision, claiming many MPs who supported the bill received visas. The US State Department declined to comment on individual cases. This denial comes after the US imposed visa restrictions on Ugandan lawmakers who supported the anti-LGBT+ bill, signed by President Museveni. The law prescribes the death penalty or life imprisonment for specific same-sex acts and punishes promoting or funding LGBT+ activities. Human rights activists in Uganda see the visa denial as a positive development. They claim it holds politicians accountable for their actions and sends a message that such hate speech is unacceptable. This incident highlights the ongoing struggles for LGBT+ rights in Africa. While 33 African countries criminalise same-sex relations, some, like Ghana and Kenya, have recently passed or are considering stricter anti-LGBT+ legislation. The International Aids Society warns that these laws hinder the fight against HIV by discouraging testing and treatment among vulnerable communities. Civil society groups in Uganda await a court ruling on an appeal challenging the constitutionality of the anti-LGBT+ legislation. The same situation is in Ghana where the draconian law is a danger to queer lives. You can read an analysis of the dramatic Ghana situation in GAY45.

Germany. Community. Berlin’s Historical Tuntenhaus Faces Potential Sale, Residents Fear Displacement

The Tuntenhaus, a renowned cultural landmark on Kastanienallee in Berlin and a unique architectural landmark in Europe, faces a potential sale, threatening the displacement of its LGBT+ residents. This iconic building, known for its anti-capitalist slogans and un-renovated facade, has housed a collective living project for LGBT+ people since 1990. Originally located in Friedrichshain, the residents moved to Kastanienallee 86 following an eviction and street battles. Jil Brest, a resident, emphasizes the Tuntenhaus’ historical significance. A recent Gay Museum Berlin exhibit highlighted its role in fostering Berlin’s subculture through affordable housing for alternative communities. Residents fear the sale would mark the end of an era for Berlin’s LGBT+ scene. The news coincides with the 50th anniversary of another Berlin institution, the AHA in Schöneberg. Residents are urging the Pankow district to exercise their right of first refusal and acquire the building, preserving the Tuntenhaus as a unique and vital part of Berlin’s cultural landscape.

Liechtenstein. Politics. Parliament Votes Overwhelmingly for Same-Sex Marriage.

Liechtenstein’s parliament has taken a historic step towards LGBT+ equality by voting in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage. The vote, with only one dissenting voice, marks a significant moment for the small European nation. Liechtenstein becomes the last German-speaking country to allow same-sex marriage, following similar advancements in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. The legislation passed its first reading on Friday, with Daniel Seger, a parliamentary group spokesman, expressing relief after a long campaign for marriage equality. He cited Switzerland’s recent legalisation as a contributing factor. While a final vote remains, a similar outcome is expected, paving the way for legal same-sex marriage to commence on January 1st, 2025. Existing registered partnerships will automatically convert to marriages. However, potential hurdles exist. A public referendum or intervention from the royal family could challenge the law. Liechtenstein’s Prince Hans-Adam II has previously expressed disapproval of same-sex marriage, raising concerns about a possible veto. The country’s complex political structure allows the royal family and the electorate to challenge each other’s decisions, creating uncertainty about the final outcome. Despite these potential roadblocks, Liechtenstein’s parliament has taken a clear stand for LGBT+ rights, marking a major step towards equality.

Europe. Media. Financial Times interviews gender theorist Judith Butler.

Financial Times interviewed the renowned gender theorist Judith Butler, whose work has reshaped perceptions of gender. Despite accusations of inaccessibility, Butler’s latest book targets a non-academic demographic, challenging conservative forces resisting societal change. They advocate for understanding gender as performative and mutable, emphasizing the need for nuanced approaches to complex issues like gender identity in sports and prisons. Butler’s own journey, from navigating familial expectations to embracing non-binary identity, underscores the personal stakes in the broader cultural conversation. Ultimately, Butler suggests that while questions surrounding pronouns may seem small, they reflect broader societal shifts and open avenues for meaningful dialogue amidst cultural divisions.

The USA. Film. Oscars Break Ground with Most Diverse Nominees Ever.

The 96th Academy Awards was a landmark ceremony, boasting the most racially diverse and LGBT+ inclusive nominees ever seen. Actors of color are present in all acting categories, with several openly LGBT+ performers among them. Lily Gladstone, the first Native American Best Actress nominee for Killers of the Flower Moon, is a frontrunner. Colman Domingo (Rustin) is the first Afro-Latino Best Actor nominee, while Jodie Foster (Nyad) is the first out woman nominated for playing an out character. America Ferrera (Barbie), Da’Vine Joy Randolph (The Holdovers), Danielle Brooks (The Color Purple), Sterling K. Brown (American Fiction), and Billie Eilish (“What Was I Made For”, who won the best song Oscar) further diversify the nominee pool. The animated film Nimona and documentary short The ABCs of Book Banning showcase LGBT+ themes, while Celine Song becomes the first Asian woman nominated for Best Original Screenplay (Past Lives). Despite these strides, female directors remain underrepresented, with only one nominee (Justine Triet, Anatomy of a Fall). Barbie, the year’s biggest woman-directed box office hit (Greta Gerwig), was snubbed in the directing category.

 

Recommendations from our favourite newspapers. This week, NYT.

Read: RuPaul’s memoir, “The House of Hidden Meanings,” traces the drag superstar’s circuitous path to fame.

Swell: Pants are widening, again.

Game: Playing the browser-based video game Infinite Craft is like peering into an A.I.’s brain.

Burrow: The “Dune” sandworm popcorn bucket may haunt your dreams.

Reuse: How to responsibly reuse and donate your old clothes.

Play the Spelling Bee. And here are today’s Mini Crossword and WordleYou can find all our puzzles here.

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Curated every week by our news editor Taylor Abbot & GAY45 editorial staff. Exclusive for subscribers on Monday through Substack and Wednesday on the website.

Taylor Abbot studied at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. He is passionate about journalism, contemporary literature, poetry, technology, socio-political involved art forms and queer implications in society. He wrote previously for several magazines as Bay Area Reporter or Männer. Nerdy curious, passionate about the weird parts of life and the good stories written by great journalists. Taylor decided to delete all his social media accounts two years ago. Lives and works between Berlin and London.

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