By Jeffrey Escoffier
During this wide-ranging selection of his so much influential essays, Escoffier strains the emergence of a homosexual and lesbian political identification over the past 4 many years.
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Extra resources for American Homo: Community and Perversity
Kinsey's work mapped in detail a submerged continent known only from the exposed mountaintops of archipelagoes. The report sparked moral outrage and a great deal of hypocrisy, but made most Americans acutely aware of the gap between daily sexual activities and public attitudes toward that sexual behavior. In his review of the first volume, the cultural critic Lionel Trilling saw the Kinsey report as a symptomatic failure of the liberal imagination: "The Report has the intention of habituating its readers to sexuality in all its manifestations: it wants to establish as it were, a democratic pluralism of sexuality.
Next page > page_33 < previous page next page > Page 33 1 Sexual Revolution And The Politics Of Gay Identity This dispersion and reconstitution of the self. That's the whole story. BAUDELAIRE The lesbian and gay movements have achieved a recognized presence in American life. 1 There are open communities of lesbians and gay men in many cities. Community organizations and businesses cater specifically to the needs of the homosexual population. Until recently, there was a lesbian and gay caucus in the Democratic Party, and there are lesbian and gay political clubs in most cities.
The original sense of identity was based on people's shared sexual preferences and on similar encounters with homophobia. The fundamental ambivalence of homosexuals, which originates in being raised as heterosexuals, makes the discursive process of identity formation central to gay and lesbian politics. The ''ethnic model" of homosexual identity emerged when lesbians and gay men had accumulated enough political and economic resources to contend with other interest groups. In the 1980s, lesbian and gay male communities entered a new period in relation to the homosexual identity developed in the 1970s.
American Homo: Community and Perversity by Jeffrey Escoffier