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The ghetto[ edit ] The term ghetto originally referred to those places in European cities where Jews were required to live according to local law. During the 20th century, ghetto came to be used to describe the areas inhabited by a variety of groups that mainstream society deemed outside the norm, including not only Jews but poor people, LGBT people, ethnic minorities, hobos , prostitutes , and bohemians.

These neighborhoods, which often arise from crowded, highly dense, and often deteriorated inner city districts, are critical sites where members of gender and sexual minorities have traditionally congregated.

From one perspective, these spaces are places of marginality created by an often homophobic , biphobic , and transphobic heterosexual community; from another perspective, they are places of refuge where members of gender and sexual minorities can benefit from the concentration of safe, nondiscriminatory resources and services just as other minorities do.

In some cities, LGBT people congregate in visibly identified neighborhoods, while in others they are dispersed in neighborhoods which have less visibility because a liberal, affirming counterculture is present. In New York, for example, the congregation of gay men had not been illegal since ; however, no openly gay bar had been granted a license to serve alcohol. The police raid of a private gay club called the Stonewall Inn on June 27, , led to a series of minor disturbances in the neighborhood of the bar over the course of the subsequent three days involving more than 1, people.

The Stonewall Rebellion managed to change not only the profile of the gay community but the dynamic within the community itself. This, along with several other similar incidents, precipitated the appearance of gay ghettos throughout North America, as spatial organization shifted from bars and street-cruising to specific neighbourhoods.

Characteristics[ edit ] Gay villages can vary widely from city to city and country to country. Furthermore, some large cities also develop "satellite" gay villages that are essentially "overflow" areas.

In such cases, gay men and lesbians have become priced-out of the main gay village and move to other, more affordable areas, thereby creating an entirely new gay village, also thereby furthering the process of gentrification by pricing-out long held tenants of these areas. In New York City , many gays in the s moved to the Chelsea neighborhood from the Greenwich Village neighborhood as a less expensive alternative; subsequent to this movement, house prices in Chelsea have increased dramatically to rival the West Village within Greenwich Village itself.

The entrance to Chueca metro station in the Plaza de Chueca Chueca square in Madrid , during gay pride week. These processes are tied to the spatial nature of the urban renaissance which was occurring at the time. The "first wave" of low-wage gay residences in these urban centers paved the way for other, more affluent gay professionals to move into the neighborhoods; this wealthier group played a significant role in the gentrification of many inner city neighborhoods.

The presence of gay men in the real estate industry of San Francisco was a major factor facilitating the urban renaissance of the city in the s. However, the gentrification of gay villages may also serve to reinforce stereotypes of gays, by pushing out gay people who do not conform to the prevailing "gay, white, affluent, professional" image. Making these neighborhoods more desirable places to live, businesses and other classes of people move to the area and, accordingly, property values tend to go up.

Richard Florida , an influential American academic, claims that their mere presence lures investors and jobs, particularly of the high-technology kind. They are, he says, "the canaries of the creative economy". Cities that have gay villages and are more tolerant towards gays, generally tend to have stronger, more robust, and creative economies, as compared to cities that are less tolerant towards gays.

Florida says that cities as such have a stronger creative class , which is integral in bringing in new ideas that stimulate economies. The gentrification of once rundown inner-city areas, coupled with the staging of pride parades in these areas, has resulted in the increased visibility of gay communities.

The growing recognition of the economic value of the gay community is not only associated with their wealth but also with the role that lesbians and gay men have played and continue to play in urban revitalization. Some cities have a very well-defined gay village in the heart of a larger area that also has a significant gay population. For example, Boystown in Chicago is a very well-defined gay village situated within the larger Lakeview neighborhood.

Lakeview is an affluent neighborhood with a reputation for being a stronghold of liberal and progressive political views. Outside of Boystown, Lakeview is a mixture of both gay and straight citizens and families, but Boystown is the main gay village.

It sits within the greater West End area, which, though decently populated by gay people, is not necessarily considered a gay village. Despite its large gay population and higher concentration of gay venues, the South Beach area in Miami Beach, Florida , was never exclusively gay, because of its popularity among straight people alike.

The Short North in downtown Columbus, Ohio is primarily known as an art district, but has a strong gay community and a high concentration of gay-oriented clubs and bars. In Boston, the trendy and upscale South End neighborhood has a large population of gay men, and the Jamaica Plain and Roslindale neighborhoods are home to scores of lesbians, also with vibrant but less trendy downtown areas.

These establishments are mainly concentrated in the southwestern portion of the Marais, many on or near the streets Sainte-Croix de la Bretonnerie and Vieille du Temple. A well-known gay village of Sitges is one of the richest residential areas within the area of greater Barcelona. The town hosts several gay events throughout the year, such as Gay Pride and Bears Week. The first monument for the gay community, an inverse triangle, was built in Passeig Maritim street in Many gay tourists use the gay-friendly accommodation in Sitges during Circuit Festival of Barcelona.

San Diego has its own gay village called Hillcrest , which sits around Balboa Park. Hillcrest is very close to the downtown area but is able to maintain a small town eclectic feel. While it is considered by most as the gay area of San Diego with its gay bars and dance clubs, the overall population of the area has only gotten more and more diverse with the rise in condominium projects.

These diverse, welcoming areas have slowly continued the gentrifying process. In Minneapolis , Minnesota areas surrounding Loring Park , site of the local LGBT pride festival, are regarded as a "gay" neighborhood, though many gay and lesbian people have migrated to more residential neighborhoods such as Bryn Mawr and Whittier. In Tampa, Florida , the gay community was traditionally spread out among several neighborhoods. In the early 21st century, the Ybor City National Historic Landmark District has seen the creation of the GaYbor District, which is now the center of gay and lesbian life in the Tampa Bay area and home to the majority of gay bars and dance clubs, restaurants, and service organizations.

Orlando, Florida , the gay community is centered around the neighborhoods of Thornton Park and Eola Heights. It is roughly bounded by Gould Street to the south, Yonge Street to the west, Charles Street to the north, and Jarvis Street to the east, with the intersection of Church and Wellesley Streets at the centre of this area. Though some gay and lesbian oriented establishments can be found outside of this area, the general boundaries of this village have been defined by the Gay Toronto Tourism Guild.

James Town and Riverdale , and in smaller numbers throughout the city and its suburbs. This is the cap to an historic year and six years of lobbying, where the Village installed two public art projects in addition to tripling the number of rainbow flags in the Village area.

The Village in Ottawa features a diverse mix of businesses and organizations, many of which cater to or of specific interest to the GLBT community, and has a high concentration of GLBT persons living and working in the area. Ogunquit , Maine has a gay population of year-round residents and second homeowners.

The area is known for having the highest density of population in Australia with many Art Deco apartment blocks. Newtown also has a sizable gay population but it has a more gritty bohemian feel. In some cities, such as Stockholm , Helsinki , Tel Aviv , Austin, Texas , and Copenhagen , there are no established gay villages, partly due to the differing social dynamics of these cities less social segregation within the city , but also due to earlier and greater social acceptance of the gay community within mainstream society.

UK Gay villages[ edit ] Bigger cities and metropolitan areas are most popular as they are deemed to be more tolerant and tend to have "a history of progressive local government policy towards supporting and financing LGBT-friendly initiatives. The city of Manchester is estimated to be home to between 24, 34, lesbian, gay and bisexual people. Birmingham Pride is celebrated each year around the late May bank holiday weekend; its entertainment and festivities are centred around the Gay Village.


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