Siya Khumalo, You Have to be Gay to Know God. Cape Town: Kwela, 2018. Pages: 288. ISBN PRINT: 9780795708244

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Megan Robertson



Printed in large white text on the front cover of Khumalo’s book is the title, “You Have to be Gay to Know God.” In my experience, the reader is likely to attract inquisitive looks from some, stretched out iterations of “…interesting…” from others, and for those who need more explanation, the question comes, “are you reading this for work?” For others, who would prefer not to know that “Gay” and “God” could lie together in one sentence, it invokes the “don’t ask, don’t tell” rule. It is clear that these responses assume that this book is aimed either at a niche group of queer Christians or perhaps an academic with a penchant for being unnecessarily feminist. However, the title and the content of the book is neither sensationalist nor niche; it rather serves both as a significant autobiographical insight into the lived reality of a gay black man and as a social commentary on the religious and political climate in South Africa...
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