Call and Response

For immediate release

Call and Response: The Black GLBT Literary Community Adds to the Dialogue on Bishop Eddie Long and New Birth Missionary Baptist Church

Hyattsville, MD (September 28, 2010)—The fallout about recent allegations regarding Bishop Eddie Long, leader of the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Atlanta, and sexual coercion of teenaged males has created an opportunity for dialogue across communities about gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer (GLBTQ) people and homophobia in the black church; sexual abuse; and power.

To further inform the discussion, Fire & Ink board members Lisa C. Moore and Steven G. Fullwood and MC Books publisher Michael Christopher have compiled a list of literature by GLBTQ people of African descent that explores the complex issues being talked about in recent days.

This list is not all-inclusive, but represents significant contributions of GLBTQ people of African descent in the 20th and 21st Centuries to the present conversation about Bishop Eddie Long and the climate of the black church. We encourage you to become informed readers.

Selected reader list

In the Life: A Black Gay Anthology, ed. by Joseph Beam (RedBone Press)

I Was Born This Way: A Gay Preacher’s Journey Through Gospel Music, Disco Stardom and a Ministry in Christ, by Archbishop Carl Bean with David Ritz (Simon & Schuster)

Beyond the Down Low: Sex, Lies and Denial in Black America, by Keith Boykin (Da Capo Press)

Unspeakable, by Michael Christopher (MC Books)

The Days of Good Looks: The Prose and Poetry of Cheryl Clarke, 1980 to 2005, by Cheryl Clarke – includes the essay, “The Failure to Transform: Homophobia in the Black Community” (Da Capo Press)

A Whosoever Church: Welcoming Lesbians and Gay Men into African American Congregations, by Gary David Comstock (Westminster John Knox Press)

Where the Edge Gathers: Building a Community of Radical Inclusion, by Rev. Yvette Flunder (Pilgrim Press)

Their Own Receive Them Not: African American Lesbians & Gays in Black Churches, by Horace L. Griffin (Pilgrim Press)

Brother to Brother: New Writings by Black Gay Men, ed. by Essex Hemphill (RedBone Press)

Ceremonies: Prose and Poetry, by Essex Hemphill (Cleis Press)

Conjuring Black Funk, by Herukhuti (Vintage Entity Press)

Shaming the Devil, by G. Winston James — includes the story, “Church” (Top Pen Press)

Spirited: Affirming the Soul and Black Gay/Lesbian Identity, ed. by G. Winston James and Lisa C. Moore (RedBone Press)

Sweet Tea: Black Gay Men of the South, by E. Patrick Johnson (University of North Carolina Press)

The Cross of Redemption: Uncollected Writings by James Baldwin, ed. by Randall Kenan (Pantheon)

does your mama know? An Anthology of Black Lesbian Coming Out Stories, ed. by Lisa C. Moore (RedBone Press)

Say Jesus and Come to Me, by Ann Allen Shockley (Naiad Press)


Fire & Ink is a nonprofit organization devoted to increasing the understanding, visibility and awareness of the works of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender writers of African descent and heritage.

MC Books is owned by author, illustrator and photographer Michael-Christopher.


There are 6 comments. Add Yours.

michaela —

I would add Baldwin’s ” Go Tell it on the Mountain” to this list.

Gil Gerald

This is excellent and timely; thank you!


Thank God for such a BLESSING – Keep Opening the Doors to Possibilities

Laurie —

Thank you for the list. I am going to see if my library has any of the titles.

Share Your Thoughts!

seven − 6 =