January 30, 2012
Communication Professor Gary Atkins just published Imaging Gay Paradise: Bali, Bangkok and Cyber-Singapore (Hong Kong University Press). The book examines the lives of three gay men who pursued sexual justice and challenged traditional ideologies of manhood. “These men sought to create refuges where gay men could come home as well as come out,” Atkins said. “They came from different cultures and ethnicities but shared a commitment to provide a safe haven for gay men.” Walter Spies was a German painter who went to Bali and eventually became a victim of a morals scandal inspired by Nazi sympathizers. Khun Toc developed a gay urban island, Bangkok Babylon. Entrepreneur and activist Stuart Koe created a “cyber-paradise” in Singapore. Atkins is an award-winning journalist whose previous book Gay Seattle: Stories of Exile and Belonging (University of Washington Press, 2003) received a Washington State Book Award and a national Jesuit Book Award. He joined the faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences in 2005 and specializes in narrative journalism, communication justice and law, and sexual justice/gender issues. The College of Arts and Sciences, the largest college in Seattle University, offers 33 undergraduate and 7 advanced degrees.
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