HOMO HISTORY — LGBTQ People You Should Know
Lorraine Hansberry (May 19, 1930 – January 12, 1965)
* African-American Playwright, Author and Speech Writer
* Most known work A RAISEN IN THE SUN
(From the play)
Mama: There is always something left to love. And if you ain’t learned that, you ain’t learned nothing.
* Received the New York Drama Critics Circle Award at 29
— One of FIVE women at that time and YOUNGEST playwright to do so
* Was married to Robert Nemiroff (later discovered she dated women during their marriage)
* Open, vocal and supportive of equality for all races and sexes
* Documentation of Hansberry’s support/placement in the roots of LGBT equality has been uncovered since her death
* Wrote into/for THE LADDER (the lesbian magazine started by the Daughters of Bilitis) signing everything with her initials
* Died after fighting pancreatic cancer at age 35
* Sexuality was not reveled until after her death
— Hansberry didn’t hide public support. Her orientation was masked by her marriage and little dialogue about her personal life.
** In 1961, Hansberry wrote to ONE (one of the FIRST gay magazines/newpapers):
I have suspected for a good time that the homosexual in America would ultimately pay a price for the intellectual impoverishment of women. Men continue to misinterpret the second-rate status of women as implying a privileged status for themselves; heterosexual think the same way about homosexuals; gentiles about Jews; whites about blacks; haves about have-nots.