One of Denmark’s most famous sons, Hans Christian Anderson, is being honored by the LGBT community, a move that has brewed controversy in the Scandinavian country. The weeklong festival celebrating the life and work of the famous fairy-tale author hopes to attract LGBT tourists to the town of Odense (where Anderson was born). The idea is the work of Parliament member Trine Bramsen.
“There is so much palaver about Hans Christian Andersen’s sexuality, and I think we should use it,” she said, noting that she believed the event could also capitalize on the country’s marriage equality law. “It should be a week where gays from all over the world can come to the island of Funen.”
The idea of celebrating Anderson as some sort of gay hero has irked fellow politicians, especially Merete Riisager who called the idea a silly suggestion. Even those in the gay and lesbian community have their concerns. Though she supports the idea of a week celebrating LGBT people, Vivi Jelstrup, of the Danish Gay and Lesbian association, said: “To my knowledge, Andersen was not homosexual, but bisexual. It appears from his diaries that he alternately fell in love with men and women.” Though their wasn’t a term for bisexual until the 20th century.
Do you think The Little Mermaid author should become Denmark’s LGBT icon? [Telegraph]