New queer literature anthologies show the work done and the work yet to do

Book reviews: Queer: A Collection of LGBTQ Writing and Queer Love are cause for celebration

Author Alan Hollinghurst is among those featured in Frank Wynne’s new anthology of queer writing. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Author Alan Hollinghurst is among those featured in Frank Wynne’s new anthology of queer writing. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Two recent anthologies of queer writing, one capacious and spanning a wide historical range, the other small though no less important, testify to the recent flowering of queer literature and while demonstrating the necessity of continued work in publishing in the field.

Frank Wynne’s hefty Queer: A Collection of LGBTQ Writing from Ancient Times to Yesterday (Head of Zeus, £25) is a massive book and, despite its size, is, as Wynne himself admits, a patchwork quilt. Because of the editor’s decision to focus on writing by LGBTQ authors which deals, in an explicit way, with some aspect of gender or sexuality, the anthology is perhaps inevitably weighted to the 20th and 21st centuries, and missing a number of names readers might expect. In fact, out of 608 pages, works published before 1900 only take up the first 42.

The Irish Times
Please subscribe or sign in to continue reading.
The Irish Times

How can I keep reading?

You’ve reached an article that is only available to Irish Times subscribers.

Subscribe today and get the full picture for just €1 for the first month.

Subscribe No obligation, cancel any time.