This book celebrates the life stories of butch and masculine queer heroes
Throughout history, queer women have defied feminine norms and led extraordinary lives, transforming the world around them. “The Life & Times of Butch Dykes: Portraits of Artists, Leaders, and Dreamers Who Changed the World,” which will be published in November 2019 by Microcosm Publishing, is an illustrated book by Eloisa Aquino that celebrates butch lesbians, both those who made their mark on the past and those still alive today.
“I think it’s great for people to feel seen, and to see others who are like themselves,” Aquino tells Equally Wed. “So I hope the people portrayed in the book can be an inspiration for butches and nonbinary folk as the extraordinary human beings that they are.”
Aquino is a Brazilian-Canadian artist who runs the micro-press B&D Press. “The Life & Times of Butch Dykes” is a compilation of her zines from the past decade, featuring people like Gloria Anzaldúa, Gertrude Stein, Gladys Bentley and Chavela Vargas.
“I made the zines because I wanted to be involved in the vibrant independent publishing scene in my city (Montreal), and I was interested in exploring the biography genre in an extremely short format, as a challenge,” explains Aquino.
Everyone highlighted in these zines lived or lives their life with a strong butch identity. From living singers, thinkers and filmmakers to legendary creative minds of the past, the illustrations showcase incredible butch heroes. “I hope whoever has a chance to grab a copy of the book can enjoy reading about people lives in the book, because they are not only captivating and talented, but also could create a space to be themselves in an often hostile environment, and thrive,” Aquino says.
The Kickstarter campaign to fundraise for publishing costs is live now through May 31. People who back the campaign will receive a variety of extras, including additional LGBTQ+ books and zines and copies of the book donated to queer libraries or community centers.