“Over the years when it came to gay villages, I mostly heard about the Castro in San Francisco and Greenwich Village in New York, but I understand why tourist guides extol the virtues of Montreal’s gay village and why tourists come here,” says McGill professor Donald W. Hinrichs, author of the just-published book Montreal’s Gay Village: The Story of a Unique Neighbourhood through the Sociological Lens.
“I think Montreal’s gay village is much more interesting, lively and important. It is compact and offers a great many services to the community. Neither the Castro or Greenwich Village have the same vibe or spirit that Montreal has. [Quebecois playwright] Michel Tremblay commented that he thought as Montreal’s village continues to gentrify, his concern is more that working-class gay people will be pushed out of the Village as wealthier people move in. But that would still leave it gay, whereas in the Castro it is non-gay people who are moving in.”
Donald W. Hinrichs launched his book Montreal’s Gay Village: The Story of a Unique Neighbourhood through the Sociological Lens yesterday at the McGill University Bookstore.