Queer Week!

Jennifer Camper
Ramadan (excerpt)

US (before 2004)

Jennifer Camper is a Lebanese-American lesbian comic book artist who’s been active since the 1980s! She edited a queer comics anthology, Juicy Mother, which features the above comic. I highly recommend it.

In an interview with Now., she says:

My father’s grandparents came here from Lebanon, but I grew up very assimilated. I don’t speak Arabic, my father died when I was young and I wasn’t part of an Arab community. In the 1990’s, I met a group of gay Arabs and Iranians and that finally allowed me to have a sense of a community.

In my art, I explore how we often live between worlds – between Arab and American, between male and female, between strengths and weaknesses.  And I’m interested in examining how issues of gender, race and class can be incorporated in stories. 

My comics are fiction, but are often based on my own or other people’s experiences. For example, when creating my comic, Ramadan, I interviewed Muslim lesbians and used their experiences to write a fictional story about a woman trying to reconcile being Muslim and gay. I’m not Muslim myself, so I told the story in the second person, and I was very concerned that the story ring true for the women I was portraying. I’m impressed by the courageous ways they’ve incorporated their faith into their lives against much opposition.


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