We are excited to share that Greggor Mattson’s powerful book WHO NEEDS GAY BARS? BAR-HOPPING THROUGH AMERICA’S ENDANGERED LGBTQ+ PLACES has been released as an audiobook with Tantor and narrated by Curtis Michael Holland!

About the book:

Gay bars have been closing by the hundreds. The story goes that increasing mainstream acceptance of LGBTQ+ people, plus dating apps, have rendered these spaces obsolete. Beyond that, rampant gentrification in big cities has pushed gay bars out of the neighborhoods they helped make hip. Who Needs Gay Bars? considers these narratives, accepting that the answer for some might be: maybe nobody. And yet . . .

Jarred by the closing of his favorite local watering hole in Cleveland, Ohio, Greggor Mattson embarks on a journey across the country to paint a much more complex picture of the cultural significance of these spaces, inside “big four” gay cities, but also beyond them.

From the historical archives of Seattle’s Garden of Allah, to the outpost bars in Texas, Missouri, or Florida that serve as community hubs for queer youth—these are places of celebration, where the next drag superstar may be discovered. They are also fraught grounds for confronting the racial and gender politics within and without the LGBTQ+ community.

The question that frames this story is not asking whether these spaces are needed, but for whom, earnestly exploring the diversity of folks and purposes they serve today.

About the author:

Greggor Mattson, PhD, is Professor and Chair of Sociology at Oberlin College. He is the author of The Cultural Politics of European Prostitution Reform (2016). His work has appeared in the Annual Review of Sociology, as well as in Slate, Literary Hub, Belt Magazine, and The Daily Beast.

Greggor is represented by Brenna English-Loeb.