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James Baldwin. Steve Schapiro. the Fire Next Time
First published in 1963, James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time stabbed at the heart of America’s so-called “Negro problem.” As remarkable for its masterful prose as for its frank and personal account of the black experience in the United States, it is considered one of the most passionate and influential explorations of 1960s race relations, weaving thematic threads of love, faith, and family into a candid assault on the hypocrisy of the “land of the free.”
Now, James Baldwin’s rich, raw, and ever relevant prose is reprinted with more than 100 photographs from Steve Schapiro, who traveled the American South with Baldwin for Life magazine. The encounter thrust Schapiro into the thick of the movement, allowing for vital, often iconic, images both of civil rights leaders–including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Fred Shuttlesworth, and Jerome Smith–and such landmark events as the March on Washington and the Selma march.
Rounding out the edition are Schapiro’s stories from the field, an original introduction by civil rights legend and U.S. Congressman John Lewis, captions by Marcia Davis of The Marshall Project, and an essay by Gloria Baldwin Karefa-Smart, who was with her brother James in Sierra Leone when he started to work on the story. The result is a remarkable visual and textual record of one of the most important and enduring struggles of the American experience. First published as a TASCHEN Collector’s Edition, now available in a popular edition.
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Happy Birthday Alice B. Toklas!
On Tuesday, April 30th, everything is 25% off!
Enjoy this fabulous picture of Alice B. Toklas, Gertrude Stein, and their poodle Basket.
Reading & Signing with Marc Stein
Erotic Islands: Art and Activism in the Queer Caribbean
In Erotic Islands, Lyndon K. Gill maps a long queer presence at a crossroads of the Caribbean. This transdisciplinary book foregrounds the queer histories of Carnival, calypso, and HIV/AIDS in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. At its heart is an extension of Audre Lorde’s use of the erotic as theory and methodology. Gill turns to lesbian/gay artistry and activism to insist on eros as an intertwined political-sensual-spiritual lens through which to see self and society more clearly. This analysis juxtaposes revered musician Calypso Rose, renowned mas man Peter Minshall, and resilient HIV/AIDS organization Friends For Life. Erotic Islands traverses black studies, queer studies, and anthropology toward an emergent black queer diaspora studies.
New Local Releases
Different Kind of Fire
Ruby Schmidt has the talent, the drive, even the guts to enroll in art school, leaving behind her childhood home and the beau she always expected to marry. Her life at the Academy seems heavenly at first, but she soon learns that societal norms in the East are as restrictive as those back home in West Texas. Rebelling against the insipid imagery woman are expected to produce, Ruby embraces bohemian life. Her burgeoning sexuality drives her into a life-long love affair with another woman and into the arms of an Italian baron. With the Panic of 1893, the nation spirals into a depression, and Ruby’s career takes a similar downward trajectory. After thinking she could have it all, Ruby now wonders how she can salvage the remnants of her life. Pregnant and broke, she returns to Texas rather than join the queues at the neighborhood soup kitchen.
Set against the Gilded Age of America, a time when suffragettes fight for reproductive rights and the right to vote, A Different Kind of Fire depicts one woman’s battle to balance husband, family, career, and ambition. Torn between her childhood sweetheart, her forbidden passion for another woman, the nobleman she had to marry, and becoming a renowned painter, Ruby’s choices mold her in ways she could never have foreseen.
Oscar Visits Walt - World Premiere Musical Performance!
Philly AIDS Thrift @ Giovanni’s Room is proud to announce that we will be hosting a world premiere musical during the course of three days in June 2019.
OSCAR visits WALT is a one-act music theater piece about Oscar Wilde’s visits to Walt Whitman in January and May, 1882. Wilde, age 27, an Oxford graduate with a famously clever wit, was devoted to aestheticism, foppery and social climbing. His admiration for Whitman began when his mother read Leaves of Grass to him in the nursery. Whitman, 62, was (of course!) the beloved, controversial, form-breaking “poet of the people”. During Oscar’s first visit to Walt’s home in Camden shortly after beginning his U.S. lecture tour, the two poets, vastly different in temperament, priorities and backgrounds, visited privately. Oscar then continued his speaking tour, returning for a second visit four months later. Much has been speculated about what transpired between the two and, at long last, OSCAR visits WALT reveals the truth. Music is by Tom Wilson Weinberg, words by Whitman, Wilde and Weinberg.
Seating is limited, so get your tickets ASAP!