Gayle Madwin (queerbychoice) wrote,
Gayle Madwin
queerbychoice

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Borders

Borders makes me dizzy. All those books in one place yet I can't make head or tail of the order in which they're arranged. To find Audre Lorde and James Baldwin I had to check first the "Literature" section, then the "Gay & Lesbian Literature" section, then the "African-American Literature" section, which is the only place where I finally found them (though I still didn't find Zami). So - to the four or five queers of African descent on my friends list: next time you're asked to choose between identities, Borders has the answer for you! Are you grateful for their assistance?

Another question - why are African-Americans the only racial/ethnic group to get their own bookstore section? Should I take that to mean that the Asian-American literature, for example, is mixed in with the generic "Literature," or should I take it to mean that Borders just doesn't sell any Asian-American literature?

And would one of the dozens of Canadians on my friends list please tell me whether the Canadian bookstores have an "African-American Literature" section? Or is it an "African-Canadian Literature" section? Or a "Literature by People of African Descent" section? Maybe they just revert to "Black Literature" in Canada? I'd love to know.

Ironic that they call the store "Borders," since they seem so intent upon delineating exactly that.

All the difficulty of finding books reminded me of Frank Episale's comments about Borders arranging their sections so that people likely to be interested in one subject would find other subjects they're also likely to be interested in right nearby. I therefore took note of the fact that the local Borders has sandwiched its "Gay & Lesbian Literature" section between "Drama" and "Untranslated Literature," and across from "Literary Criticism." So: queers like theater, are multilingual, and are very academically inclined?

Interesting. But I'd better stop forgetting my Spanish, because if I forget any more of it, I'm afraid I'll be kicked out of queerdom. I'm not as multilingual as I used to be.
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