Author(s): Elisha Lim
A groundbreaking collection of interviews, memoirs and gossip from a queer international vanguard of gender, race and beauty.
This collects excerpts from a range of Canadian cartoonist Lim’s projects over the past five years: Sissy, The Illustrated Gentleman, Queer Child in the Eighties, and the cult series 100 Butches. The resulting tapestry documents not only Lim’s experiences and life, but also provides a window into queer culture. With 100 Butches, they (Lim prefers the collective pronoun) recollect strangers, relatives, historical figures, and ex-partners, some openly respected and admired, and some who were appreciated in silent kinship. Lim makes an ideal record keeper, deftly and diligently representing the words of people who are often unheard and ignored, endeavoring to educate and shed a light on the many facets of these individuals, while questioning and exploring the notions of queer identity. The subjects discuss connotations and meaning, the intersection of race and gender, the shifting perceptions of people around them, the power afforded to fashion choices—humdrum issues taken for granted and easily dismissed. Lim’s sketchy, beautiful portraits take a backseat to the narration to some degree, but this is a vital and vibrant work never feels anything less than personal and human. (June)