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According to Didier Eribon, melancholy is where it all starts and where it also ends: the lifelong process of mourning that each homosexual experiences, and through which they construct their own identity. In this beguiling book, an introverted, anxious, ambitious, artistically gifted queer Filipino-Canadian boy finds solace, inspiration, and a “syllabus for living” in art — works of literature, music, television, and cultural criticism including E.M Forster, Tennessee Williams, Queer as Folk, 'Anne of Green Gables', Maria Callas, Susan Sontag and Camille Paglia. But their contribution to his intellectual, emotional, and spiritual edification belies the fact that they were largely heteronormative and white, which had the effect of invisibilizing him as a queer person of color.
Part memoir, part cultural commentary, and a hybrid of besotted aesthetic appreciation and unsparing critique, 'Double Melancholy' is by turns a passionate love letter to art and an embattled examination of its oppressive complicity with the society that produces it, and the depths to which art both enriches and colonizes us.
Author: C.E. Gatchalian
Paperback, 135 Pages, Published 2019
A work of such psychic intimacy, one almost has the sense that they're watching Gatchalian think in real time on the page. Diaristic, theoretical, lyrical, Double Melancholy gives voice to a unique, multi-hyphenated identity. -Jordan Tannahill, author of Liminal
Gatchalian's prose is evocative, lyrical, and poetic. It's also rigorous and tough. Gatchalian doesn't only expose oppressive legacies of our homophobic, racist, and patriarchal histories. He also exposes himself. In passages of raw, compelling vulnerability, he offers readers a window into the indefensible, incorrect desires, longings, and hatreds that we all carry in some form or other, and that many of us go to great lengths to mask. -Marcus Youssef, winner of the Siminovitch Prize and Rio Tinto Alcan Performing Arts Award