Langston Hughes, the Chicago Defender, and Ghosts

I just stumbled across this article, which combines three wonderful items: Langston Hughes, the Chicago Defender, and ghosts. Hughes was a poet and writer who was blacklisted in the 1950s and the subject of much government and anti-communist organization concern because of his powerful voice and the respect he commanded. The Chicago Defender was one of the most important African American newspapers.

Lillian Hellman, censored in Florida, knew a thing or two about blacklists

Author Lillian Hellman's plays have been pulled from the shelves of Orange County Public School libraries in Orlando, Florida, victims of House Bill 1069--a bill restricting everything from pronoun use to sex education and other issues deemed offensive by Florida conservatives.

Why is queer media history always about men?

The New Yorker just reviewed Paramount+'s new streaming series, Fellow Travelers. I'm so glad to see more media about the blacklist era, especially stories that explore the sordidness of anti-communists like Joseph McCarthy and Roy Cohn (who were front men for a dense network of gossips and homophobes). 

Helen Tamiris Receives Posthumous Award

Choreographer, dancer, teacher, and activist Helen Tamiris recently received a posthumous award from Dance Magazine, honoring "the artistry, integrity, and resilience that dance artists" have exhibited. Born Helen Becker, she took the name Tamiris for the Massagetaen queen Tomyris, who defeated and killed Cyrus the Great and his invading army in 530 BCE.

Marsha Hunt Dies at 104

Marsha Hunt, the longest-lived of the 41 women listed in Red Channels in 1950, died last week. 

Along with Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Danny Kaye, John Huston, and Katherine Hepburn, Hunt joined the Committee for the First Amendment, a group the grew out of attacks on the Hollywood writers, producers, and directors who became known as the Hollywood Ten and challenged the House Un-American Activities Committee's attacks on progressives in the film industry.