South Asian GLB bibliography

bedell at bedell at
Sun Nov 6 02:34:54 UTC 1994

Here is an updated bibliography on hijras and homosexuality in South
Asian culture.  Any additional suggestions are welcome.

David Bedell, University of Bridgeport <bedell at>

Revised 11/05/94.
Compiled by David Bedell, University of Bridgeport <bedell at>
|Note:  This document is part of an international bibliography available from |
|the QRD archive (Queer Resources Directory).  It can be retrieved by         |
|anonymous ftp from using the pathname pub/QRD/world/        |
|international.lgb.bibliography.  Or send e-mail to <ftpmail at>|
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Ackerley, J. R.  Hindoo Holiday:  An Indian Journal.  New York:  Simon &
 Schuster, 1990.  British gay author's account of his life as secretary and
 confidant to an Indian maharajah.  (First published in 1932.)

Devi, Shakuntala.  The World of Homosexuals.  New Delhi:  Vikas Publishing
 House, 1977.

Harry, Joseph, & Das, Man Singh, eds.  Homosexuality in International
 Perspective.  New Delhi:  Vikas Publishing House, 1980.

Kakar, Sudhir.  Intimate Relations:  Exploring Indian Sexuality.  Chicago:
 University of Chicago Press, 1990.

Kala, Arvind.  Invisible Minority:  The Unknown World of the Indian Homosexual.
 New Delhi:  Dynamic, n.d.

Kalliat, Prem, director.  Jareena:  Portrait of a Hijra.  New York:  Third
 World Newsreel, 1990.  A 25-minute documentary exploring the life of a
 transsexual and her community in South India. 

Kureishi, Hanif.  The Buddha of Suburbia.  New York:  Viking Penguin, 1990.
 In this satiric view of 1960s-70s English popular culture, an Anglo-Indian
 bisexual man leaves the suburban lifestyle to experience disparate cultures,
 classes, and genders.

Kureishi, Hanif.  My Beautiful Laundrette and The Rainbow Sign.  Boston: 
 Faber and Faber, 1986.  "Laundrette" is the screenplay of Kureishi's film
 about a romance between an Anglo-Pakistani and a London skinhead.

Lapierre, Dominique.  The City of Joy, trans. from French by Kathryn Spink.
 Garden City, NY:  Doubleday, 1985.  Set in Calcutta; includes a description
 of the hijras and their origins.

Less than Gay:  A Citizens' Report on the Status of Homosexuality in India.
 New Delhi:  AIDS Bhedbhav Virodhi Andolan, 1991.

Meer, Ameena.  Bombay Talkie.  New York:  Serpent's Tail, 1994.  Novel
 about two Indian cousins' search for identity:  one is a straight woman
 who grew up in New York, the other a gay man who grew up in Paris. 

Mootoo, Shani.  Out on Main Street and Other Stories.  Vancouver:  Press Gang
 Publishers, 1993.  Stories by an Indo-Trinidadian-Canadian lesbian.

Namjoshi, Suniti.  Because of India:  Selected Poems and Fables.  London: 
 Only Woman, 1989.  These essays and excerpts from Namjoshi's work provide
 insight into her development both as a writer and as a person. 

Namjoshi, Suniti.  The Conversations of Cow.  London:  Women's Press, 1985.
 One of the characters is a "misogynistic lesbian."

Namjoshi, Suniti.  Feminist Fables, 2d ed.  London:  Sheba Feminist
 Publishers, 1990.  Explicitly lesbian content in the form of terse, witty

Namjoshi, Suniti.  Flesh and Paper.  New York:  Women Make Movies, 1990. 
 A 26-minute film in which lesbian writer Namjoshi and others discuss her life
 and work, with readings of her poetry.  Born into an Indian royal family,
 She now resides in England.  Her poems, fables, and novels are characterized
 by her wry and satirical humor, informed by both a lesbian consciousness and
 a deep Indian cultural framework. 
Nanda, Serena.  Neither Man nor Woman:  The Hijras of India.  Belmont, CA:
 Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1990.  Study of the eunuchs and transsexuals of

Parmar, Pratibha, producer & director.  Khush.  New York:  Women Make Movies,
 1991.  A 24-minute videorecording of interviews with South Asian gay men and
 lesbians living in the West and in India.  Discussion covers topics of racism
 within the Western gay community; the difficulty of developing an Asian vs. a
 white concept of homosexuality; the cultural pressure to marry; persecution of
 gay men in India; and the implications of caste barriers in the efforts to
 build a united gay and lesbian Indian community.

Ratti, Rakesh, ed.  A Lotus of Another Color:  An Unfolding of the South Asian
 Gay and Lesbian Experience.  Boston:  Alyson Publications, 1993.  Gay men and
 lesbians from India, Pakistan, and other South Asian countries discuss their
 challenges and accomplishments.

Selvadurai, Shyam.  Funny Boy.  Toronto:  McClelland & Stewart, 1994.  A
 homosexual boy's bittersweet passage to maturity is hauntingly set against
 growing political tensions in Sri Lanka. 

Sharma, Satish Kumar.  Hijras, the Labelled Deviants.  New Delhi:  Gian
 Publishing House, 1989.  Analytical study on the congenital hermaphrodites and
 castrated eunuchs of India.

Singh, Khushwant, & De, Shobha, eds.  Uncertain Liasons:  Sex, Strife, and
 Togetherness in Urban India.  New Delhi:  Viking Penguin, 1993.  Includes a
 section on homosexuality by Ashok Row Kavi.

Vyas, M. D., & Shingala, Yogesh.  The Life Style of the Eunuchs.  Flushing, NY:
 Asia Book Corporation of America, 1987.  A study of the hijras of Vadodara
 City, Gujarat, India.

Yorke, Michael, director.  Eunuchs:  India's Third Gender.  BBC?, 1991.
 A 40-minute, made-for-BBC look at some of the more than half a million
 eunuchs--or hijras--in India today.  This film captures the pleasures
 and contradictions of a living alternative to Western ideas about gender. 

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