Walt Whitman is one of the greatest poets recognized for both his ability to capture the many unique experiences of the American as well as for his intimate poems describing homosexual relationships. He is from an era of American history in which great wordsmiths were revered with respect. Whitman’s poems opened up the opportunity for other poets and writers to come out. Through the early to mid 20th century a sexual revolution was slowly rocking through the US, and its effects translated into more poems and writings. The great queer poet, Allen Ginsberg who wrote through the 1950s and 60s, was heavily influenced by Whitman.
In recent years and as LGBTQ people have been gaining civil rights, there’s been a shift in the forms of activism and literature put out by LGBTQ people. To some of the older generations who suffered a very different form of discrimination than what is present today, the younger generation has become complacent and has begun to view sexuality and gender as unimportant.
Revel&Riot is a website that counters this argument. This website features many resources and information for LGBTQ people and allies. On their homepage they describe themselves as:
Revel & Riot is a non-profit organization working for LGBTQ rights, awareness and equality.
We use the t-shirt to spread that message – a personal and common-place canvas – the perfect medium
to express identity, pride, solidarity, to spark a conversation and to make a profound political statement.
The name Revel & Riot is inspired by the complexities of being LGBTQ in the world today.
While we fight for our rights, for our lives and against all forms of oppression,
love and pride provide the inspiration.
Our funding comes entirely from the sale of our products and donations,
so we thank you for wearing the message of equality proudly, and for supporting our cause!
It also contains a news feed for what’s been happening recently in the lives of LGBTQ people around the world.
The purpose of Revel & Riot is two fold. Revel news articles “celebrate love and art” and support an artistic movement still heavily prevalent in the LGBTQ movement. Gender and sexuality do matter to this generation and the artwork, music, literature and love that can be found under the Revel section of the News tab reminds us of that. The Riot part brings out the activist in us. Through the Riot section of the News tab we can read stories of injustices, homophobia and transphobia that happen in our communities and around the world. This news is meant to motivate us to organize and take action against this discrimination. People can subscribe to the Revel & Riot mailing list and receive updates on current events affecting the LGBTQ population.
The website also provides a list of resources and organizations that they support. The resources give information on topics related to LGBTQ lives to help give people the knowledge of what things are and what they can do to become activists. There is a list of LGBTQ community organizations found through the resources tab that are organized by region. Organizations from the various states of the United States as well as the territories of Canada are listed and can also be divided into what sort of issues they handle (i.e. transgender, People of Color, religion, Sex Ed). We can Revel in the support and love given by resources in our areas, but we can also be empowered by them to Riot and fight for positive change.
There’s is an Action tab that is in the works, but may also prove as a useful resource for LGBTQ activism.
Revel & Right has free downloadable art/posters and they also spread their art through t-shirts and other objects with slogans like “Life Goes By Too Quickly” and “It’s All Fun and Gay Until Someone Loses Their Rights.”
Revel & Riot is an example of the modern LGBTQ art and activist movement that is helping to press forward with the LGBTQ Rights agenda. Though it may seem like our great poets and activists are gone or aging, they have left behind a legacy that will continue in a modernized version of activism.