Manila, Philippines is one of the few major Asian cities with an overt gay scene that openly contradicts the conservative culture of the country. Despite a homophobic environment that is critical and hostile to queer citizens a lively LGBT community thrives, and it vigorously leans into the face of the political, religious and legal establishment.
Thailand is one of the most strongly Buddhist countries in the world. The national religion is Theravada Buddhism which is practiced by more than 95% of all Thais. This partially accounts for the high tolerance level of gay life in Bangkok. Buddhism does not overtly condemn homosexuality as do Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Gay Bangkok
Hoi An is a charming coastal city with much traditional architecture and narrow pedestrian streets. The old town is a UNESCO World Heritage site with its pagodas, antique houses and museums. Artisans turn out paintings, carvings and lots of clothing, rain or shine, flooding or dry. Outside the city is the My Son ancient kingdom
Cox’s Bazar is Bangladesh’s beach resort town on the southeast coast near Burma. Getting there by bus from Chittagong is another colorful adventure of street life and risky vehicle drivers. Photos 1-23 reveal the vibrant social and commercial life along the main highway, including military practice maneuvers with soldiers sporting live-ammunition machine guns (photo 9).
Driving through rural India offers a wide spectrum of poor and simple life, manual labor, friendly people, slow transportation and even a new airport near Hospet, which accommodates visitors to the great ruins of Hampi and to the huge steel plant adjacent to the airport. This gallery takes us through the areas of Colva in
Indonesia – lifeguard try-outs on Kuta Beach enliven an already busy social gathering place for natives and visitors. not far from the Hard Rock Hotel south of Legian Beach. (My insincere apologies for the many repetitive photos of lifeguards!) Read the stories about gay Indonesia
Intro: A reverential visit to one of World War II’s most haunting and impressive sites. Also see: Gay Philippines Stories Gay Philippines News & Reports 2001 to present Gay Philippines Photo Galleries By Richard Ammon September 1998 The most haunting aspect of history is the echoing silence that enfolds epic events long after
Nha Trang has some of the best beaches in Vietnam. The clear turquoise water and endless sand along with countless informal restaurants and hotels make this city of 320,000 a relaxing traveler’s rest stop (except in November and December). About 100 km south of Nah Trang are the ancient Po Klaung Garai Towers (first five
Not all gay people live in the dark shadows of China, away from the new prosperity. A number of ‘nouveau comrades’ in Shanghai live well and socialize in warm friendship networks. They tote cell phones, speak fluent English and have above-average incomes; several are in loving relationships. They live active, productive and eventful lives–part of the emerging ‘guppie’ class.
India’s train system is one of the most extensive in the world, with thousands of train departures and arrivals every day. It operates about 9000 passenger trains and daily transports 17 million people across twenty-eight states and three union territories The levels of comfort range from the regal to the ragged. Check out this Youtube
In early October 2002 terrorists exploded a huge bomb outside two popular nightclubs in Bali killing nearly 300 young people, mostly vacationing Australians. These images were taken two weeks later on a day that (then) President Mrs. Makawati Sukarnoputri visited the site. She is shown wearing a peach-colored outfit and with a rainbow-colored umbrella held
Interviews with modern Malaysians introduces us to the shadows and reliefs of gay life in that culture. Not great but not bad, for now. Also see: Islam and Homosexuality Gay Malaysia News & Reports 1999 to present Gay Muslim Reports By Richard Ammon Updated April 2011 The Accidental Informant In the shadows of the
The Philippines is a country located in Southeast Asia with Manila as its capital city. It constitutes an archipelago of 7,107 islands.The country is the world’s 12th most populous country with a population approaching 90 million people. Its national economy is the 46th largest in the world. There are more than 11 million overseas Filipinos
A guest photographer living in Taiwan offers a random selection of images from his roving mind’s eye. They range from urban life in Taipei and Kaoshiung to rural mountains and sea surfing. The island of Taiwan, also known as Formosa, is located in East Asia off the coast of mainland China. The island is 394
Hue city is another cultural and historic gem of Vietnam. With 290,00 people the city is alive with commerce, tourism, ancient and modern buildings, ambitious citizens and painful war memories (now mostly out of mind). The major attractions now are not religious but historic. The huge Citadel (Imperial City), once the seat of emperors’ mightly
By Richard Ammon GlobalGayz.com November 2017 Fantasy Life As I wrote this story, Thailand was glued to a royal funeral ceremony via millions of TVs, radios and live in central Bangkok. For eight hours, since 0700 on a Saturday in November 2017, monks and ancient horns filled the solemn air with prayers and chants as
Intro: Two academic commentaries and three interviews serve as a basic introduction to the vast and complex potpourri of cultures known as India. Gay India is one of the convoluted subcultures folded
into the intense tapestry of languages, customs, religions and secular traditions in this country of a billion people.
In parts one and two, guest authors discuss widespread male-male sexuality as an unspoken and unquestioned–and unlabeled–way of life integrated into family and village customs. The public–spoken or written–label of ‘gay’ or ‘homosexual’ is questioned as a valid description of such men: traditional MSM does not necessarily mean today’s ‘queer’.
Following these academic commentaries are links to parts three and four: interviews with three important gay and lesbian leaders who give a more ‘flesh and blood’ feel for gay life that is ‘out’ and evident in modern India.
The final fifth section is a story about Calcutta’s first gay pride parade and a reflection of its extended meaning.
Intro: Lesbians present a different scene than the men. More modest in their sexual expression, there are no lesbian saunas where women walk around in towels cruising each other, although there are lesbian bars. Various reasons have been offered to explain this difference, from men’s more predatory nature to feminist distaste for imitating male habits to women’s natural nurturing subjective demeanor versus men’s penchant for objectifying sex—or powerful social traditions that shape and limit women’s roles in society.
Guest writer Martin Forman opens a small window onto the sly, furtive and suspicious gay ‘scene’ in the city of Sylhet, Bangladesh. This is followed by a level-headed essay by Afsan Chowdury, a native author, who writes: “there are gays in our Bengali society, and there is no sense in suppressing and stifling it.”
Far from the crowds of Asia and American lies tiny Guam in the western Pacific. Modern and historic, the island – and town of Tumon – is a miniature US state in many ways with its beachfront luxury hotels, glittery shopping malls, K-Mart, hetero strip joints and gay bars. But even these inventions don’t take away from the simple tropical beauty of the land. Jungled hills, countless palm-fringed beach coves and rural Chamorro villages make this a place of quiet beauty. Gay life is barely visible, laid back and comfortable.