'Sex, Love And Homophobia' - New Amnesty International Book on Sexuality and Human Rights

As people continue to be arrested, imprisoned and even killed because of their sexuality, and less than a month after the murder of Brian Williamson, Jamaica’s best known gay rights activist, Amnesty International is publishing a book which tackles the complex issues behind homophobia.

‘Sex, Love and Homophobia’ by Vanessa Baird, co-editor at the New Internationalist, will be launched at a special event on 1 July 2004 at Foyles Bookshop in London.

The 150-page book explores attitudes towards and laws on sexuality around the world in 26 easy-to-read A to Z entries. It is objective, clear and vividly illustrated throughout, and is packed with personal stories.

In its foreword Archbishop Desmond Tutu says:

“This book illuminates anew the bleak wasteland that is prejudice. It illuminates more clearly than ever that a loving, understanding humanity is sustained by justice. Sex, Love and Homophobia is a bright light on the path to justice.”

‘Sex, Love and Homophobia’ is the second book in Amnesty International’s Human Rights Issues series. It brings to light the hidden history of homosexuality, how it is regarded by different faiths, and the violent persecution of lesbian and gay people around the world. It is aimed at 16-year-olds and upwards, regardless of their sexual orientation, and provides a general introduction to the complex issues of sexuality and homophobia.

The book will be launched by Grayson Perry, Turner Prize winner, who comments:

“Here is a book that neither sensationalises nor pathologises the behaviour of people with a minority sexual orientation, a book that is very accessible to young people and is also a moving and serious document of the history, culture and politics of the LGBTIed world of which I am proud to play a small part.”

Grayson Perry, Vanessa Baird and a survivor of homophobic hate crime will speak at the launch of ‘Sex, Love and Homophobia’. This will take place at 6.30pm on Thursday 1 July in Foyles Bookshop (113-119 Charing Cross Road, London WC2). Please contact Sarah Green at Amnesty International UK on 020 7814 6238 if you would like to attend.

Review copies of ‘Sex, Love and Homophobia’ are available. Contact Sarah Green at Amnesty International UK on the above number.

Background information:

  1. More than 70 countries have laws that criminalise same-sex relations.
  2. Amnesty International has more than 1.8 million supporters worldwide who campaign on behalf of people whose human rights are violated. The organisation campaigns for the release of anyone imprisoned solely on grounds of their sexuality and supports LGBT people who are under threat for defending their rights.
  3. Vanessa Baird has also written ‘The No-Nonsense Guide to Sexual Diversity’.
  4. 'Sex, Love and Homophobia: LGBTIed lives', published by Amnesty International UK, will be available in bookshops, ISBN number 1 873328 57 5 priced £9.99.

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