In honor of Pride Month, this month’s Equality Now Recommends is a round up of recommendations from our staff and supporters of books, movies, TV shows, and podcasts, that act as a megaphone for LGBTQ+ rights.
The Paths of Marriage by Mala Kumar
Lakshmi, a bright student who grew up in poverty, marries and immigrates to the United States from India to provide a better life for herself and her family. Clinging to her cultural realities, she forces her American daughter, Pooja, into an arranged marriage, creating a rift of resentment. Pooja’s daughter, Deepa, is an out lesbian to everyone but her family. The woman Deepa loves presents an ultimatum—come out to Pooja or break up—and Deepa is forced to confront her greatest fear. Three generations of Indian and Indian-American women navigate the harsh slums of Chennai to the bustle of New York City, struggling through a cathartic generational collision to try to come together as a family.
Rainbow Milk by Paul Mendez
Rainbow Milk is an intersectional coming-of-age story set in the United Kingdom, following nineteen-year-old Jesse McCarthy as he grapples with his racial and sexual identities against the backdrop of a Jehovah’s Witness upbringing and the legacies of the Windrush generation. Rainbow Milk is a bold exploration of race, class, sexuality, freedom, and religion across generations, time, and cultures.
Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson
Jeanette is a bright and rebellious orphan who is adopted into an evangelical household in the dour, industrial North of England, and finds herself embroidering grim religious mottoes and shaking her little tambourine for Jesus. But as this budding missionary comes of age, and comes to terms with her unorthodox sexuality, the peculiar balance of her God-fearing household dissolves. Jeanette’s insistence on listening to truths of her own heart and mind—and on reporting them with wit and passion—makes for an unforgettable chronicle of an eccentric, moving passage into adulthood.
Queer Africa: New and Collection Fiction by various authors
A South African collection of 18 queer stories by writers from all over the African continent which was published by MaThoko Books, an imprint of the Gay and Lesbian Memory in Action (GALA), a center for LGBT culture and education in South Africa. This evocative collection of stories which portray queerness in varied settings has been described as a celebration of the “diversity and fluidity of queer and African identities, offering a sometimes radical re-imagining of life on the continent.”
A Secret Love
Falling in love in 1947, two women — Pat Henschel and pro baseball player Terry Donahue — begin a 65-year journey of love and overcoming prejudice. This documentary offers a window into the lives of Terry Donahue and Pat Henschel, who lived for six decades, in public and to kin, as dear friends.
This Puerto Rican documentary film, directed by Antonio Santini and Dan Sickles, stars Jason “April” Carrión, Samantha Close, and Ivana Fred. The film shows several stories of the transgender community in Puerto Rico, including April Carrion, a well-known drag queen who participated in the reality show RuPaul’s Drag Race. Mala Mala also includes the historic victory of the LGBT community with the approval and signature of Law 238-2014 (in Puerto Rico), which prevents discrimination in employment based on sexual orientation and/or gender identity.
New Yorker Leila lives in London with her girlfriend of 10 years and business partner, Sadie, but Leila has a secret: she is bisexual; realizing that she is living a lie, Leila breaks up with her girlfriend and tries to live life as a bisexual.
This show follows the story of Otis Milburn, an insecure teenager who is ambivalent about sex even though, or perhaps because, his mother is a sex therapist who is frank about all aspects of sexuality. After inadvertently assisting the school bully with his sexual performance anxiety, Otis sets up a sex advice business with Maeve—a confident but troubled classmate—to help their fellow students with their sexual problems. The show covers themes of sexual orientation, preference and celebrates all forms of love and friendship through the microcosm of high school students.
Podcasts & Music
Mary Anne Hobbs Radio Show: Celebrating Pride Month With LGBTQI+ People of Colour
This episode of the BBC radio program shines a light on LGBTQI+ People of Colour for Pride month. Chloe Cousins (Rainbow Noir) speaks about Pride and Lady Phyll, Mista Strange and Jaheda choose their Pride anthems.
Nancy is a critically-acclaimed podcast featuring queer stories and conversations, hosted by two best friends, neither of whom are named Nancy. It’s a podcast about how we define ourselves, and the journey it takes to get there. Unfortunately, Nancy was canceled at the end of May, their final episode will be released June 29 but all previous episodes will still be available to listen to!
LeGaL LGBT Podcast
This podcast features lively discussions about the latest legal news affecting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community in the U.S. and abroad. It includes interviews with LGBTQ lawyers, policy wonks, and activists.
Do you have any suggestions for us to share next month? Please send them to us, we’d love to hear from you.