Takes on TV’s Treatment

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Media QueeredMedia Queered: Visibility and its Discontents
Edited by Kevin G. Barnhurst
Peter Lang Publishing Group.  298 pages, $89.95 ($32.95 paper)

 

IN APRIL 1954, Los Angeles television station KTTV aired a segment called “The Sex Variant in Southern California,” which for the first time allowed an openly gay man to describe his life to the general public on his own terms. After presenting unsympathetic interviews with a psychologist and a police officer, the talk-show host introduced a 22-year-old gay man, pseudonymously dubbed “Curtis White.” They asked if he wished he could be transformed into a heterosexual. White said no.

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