Browsing: The Science of Homo-Sex

January – February, 2008

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THAT MANY OR MOST of the prominent figures of the Harlem Renaissance were gay or bisexual has become such a commonplace that Henry Louis Gates, Jr. could assert in 1993 that the Harlem Renaissance “was surely as gay as it was black, not that it was exclusively either of these.”

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… Most queer Americans are used to encountering an established gay nightlife in the world’s larger cities (at least those where political oppression is not a factor), and it’s reasonable to expect Tokyo to fall into this category. …

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THE SO-CALLED “HOMINTERN” was an imagined conspiracy of mid- to late-20th-century gay artists whose works and influence served to destabilize Cold War America-or so it was argued by reactionary pundits. …

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… the year’s most notable event was the October publication of The Joy of Gay Sex, by Charles Silverstein and Edmund White. It was the first book from a mainstream publisher that dared to examine the “how” of homosexuality rather than the “why” approach of both psychologists and priests.

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“CHEERING STUDENTS filled River High’s gymnasium. Packed tightly in bleachers, they sang, hol-lered, and danced to loud hip-hop music. Over their heads hung banners celebrating fifty years of River High’s sports victories. The yearly assembly in which the student body voted for the most popular senior boy in the school to be crowned Mr. Cougar was under way, featuring six candidates performing a series of skits to earn student votes.”

Thus begins Dude, You’re a Fag …

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AT ONE POINT in the “true story” of the early years of his life, Elliot Tiber describes meeting Marlon Brando and Wally Cox in the San Remo bar in Greenwich Village. Although this encounter took place over forty years ago, Tiber reproduces, in improbable detail, the conversation of the three men.

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