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Gay Lives: Homosexual Autobiography from John Addington Symonds to Paul…

by Paul Robinson

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"Paul Robinson reads the memoirs of fourteen French, British, and American gay authors - including Jean Genet, Quentin Crisp, and Martin Duberman - through the prism of sexual identity: How did these men understand their homosexuality? Did they embrace or reject it? How did they express their often conflicted desires, in words ranging from the defiant and brutally frank to the ambiguous and abstract? Robinson shows how all these authors struggled to cope with their sexuality and to reconcile it with prevailing conceptions of masculinity; he considers, through their writings, the choices each man made to accommodate himself to society's homophobia or live in protest against his oppression. And Robinson also discovers national patterns among them as he explores the English obsession with social class and the French association of homosexual attraction with geographical or racial difference."--Jacket.… (more)
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This uncommon collection of autobiographical lives focuses on fourteen gay men from both different national backgrounds and unique gay lives. The lives were fashioned in different cultural contexts thus presenting difficulties that inform each individual's experience. Gay identity and the process of self-realization are brought to the fore in this thought-provoking collection of biographical and historical essays. ( )
  jwhenderson | Nov 10, 2019 |
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"Paul Robinson reads the memoirs of fourteen French, British, and American gay authors - including Jean Genet, Quentin Crisp, and Martin Duberman - through the prism of sexual identity: How did these men understand their homosexuality? Did they embrace or reject it? How did they express their often conflicted desires, in words ranging from the defiant and brutally frank to the ambiguous and abstract? Robinson shows how all these authors struggled to cope with their sexuality and to reconcile it with prevailing conceptions of masculinity; he considers, through their writings, the choices each man made to accommodate himself to society's homophobia or live in protest against his oppression. And Robinson also discovers national patterns among them as he explores the English obsession with social class and the French association of homosexual attraction with geographical or racial difference."--Jacket.

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