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The Resource A queer history of the United States, by Michael Bronski

A queer history of the United States, by Michael Bronski

Label
A queer history of the United States
Title
A queer history of the United States
Statement of responsibility
by Michael Bronski
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
"A Queer History of the United States is groundbreaking and accessible. It looks at how American culture has shaped the LGBT, or queer, experience, while simultaneously arguing that LGBT people not only shaped but were pivotal in creating our country. Using numerous primary documents and literature, as well as social histories, Bronski's book takes the reader through the centuries--from Columbus' arrival and the brutal treatment the Native peoples received, through the American Revolution's radical challenging of sex and gender roles--to the violent, and liberating, 19th century--and the transformative social justice movements of the 20th. Bronski's book is filled with startling examples of often ignored or unknown aspects of American history: the ineffectiveness of sodomy laws in the colonies, the prevalence of cross-dressing women soldiers in the Civil War, the effect of new technologies on LGBT life in the 19th century, and how rock music and popular culture were, in large part, responsible for the great backlash against gay rights in the late 1970s. More than anything, A Queer History of the United States is not so much about queer history as it is about all American history--and why it should matter to both LGBT people and heterosexuals alike"--
Tone
Writing style
Award
  • Lambda Literary Award, 2011.
  • Stonewall Book Award for the Israel Fishman Non-fiction Award, 2012.
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ This enthralling history spans 500 years of evolving perspectives on sexuality in America—from the European settlers' violent responses to the more fluid gender roles of Native Americans to how the birth control pill, which separated sex from reproduction, contributed to the cause of LGBT liberation. Bronski (Pulp Friction), senior lecturer in women's and gender studies at Dartmouth, argues that a queer history of the U.S. is inextricably tied to the more well-known accounts of migrations, wars (his book describes hundreds of Civil War soldiers who were women disguised as men), economics, and philosophical evolutions. Attitudes to sexuality in the U.S. embody a characteristically American "tension between securing personal freedom for individuals" and "desire to protect people." In chapters that deftly balance narrative and history, personal stories and trivia gems (Dr. John Harvey Kellogg promoted Corn Flakes as a diet capable of curbing "the pernicious habit of onanism"), he chronicles not only the public and private lives of gays in America but the changing attitudes toward sex and marriage in the mainstream population. A savvy political, legal, literary (and even fashion) history, Bronski's narrative is as intellectually rigorous as it is entertaining. (May) --Staff (Reviewed January 17, 2011) (Publishers Weekly, vol 258, issue 03, p)
  • This panoramic survey is less a history of homosexuality in the United States than a reexamination of American mores through a queer lens, a thematic analysis of the ways in which same-sex desire has reflected and shaped American morality over the past 500 years. Calling to mind Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States , this is the first title in Beacon's new "ReVisioning American History" series. Bronski (women's and gender studies and Jewish studies, Dartmouth Coll.), who has been writing on LGBT topics for several decades, emphasizes the recurring historical tension between integrationist and anarchist paradigms of homosexuality, and he explores how various political and social movements—including transcendentalism, feminism, progressivism, and the labor and Civil Rights movements—have intersected with and diverged from the struggle for sexual freedom. The epilog covers the past two decades, which Bronski deems too recent to be treated as history. VERDICT Bronski does an impressive job weaving together existing LGBT scholarship with his own theoretical analysis. Recommended for anyone interested in gender, sexuality, or American history and culture.— David Gibbs, Georgetown Univ. Lib., Washington, DC --David Gibbs (Reviewed April 15, 2011) (Library Journal, vol 136, issue 7, p104)
  • /* Starred Review */ Illuminating history lesson integrating the homosexual movement into America's historical landscape. This is the first book in the publisher's ReVisioning American History series. LGBT expert Bronski (Women's and Gender Studies, Jewish Studies/Dartmouth Coll; Pulp Friction: Uncovering the Golden Age of Gay Male Pulps, 2003, etc.) contends that gay men and women's contributions to the nation's historical fabric have not always been recognized for their impact. To prove his point, the author ambitiously chronologically traces five centuries of significant, transformational events, people and places in gay history. Bronski reaches back to 1492 to highlight the sexually progressive European influence explorers like Christopher Columbus had on colonial culture and how those ideals locked horns with Puritanical mores. The author equates the injustice of slavery to homosexual oppression and explores the Revolutionary era's strict ideas of gender conformity and the proliferation of same-sex "romantic friendships" in the 18th  century. Drawing on countless references from literary texts, gay classics, poetry, journals, newspaper articles and letters, Bronski gives readers a grand tour of queer cultural vantage points. These include the "outlaw culture" of San Francisco, the erotic prose of Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman, the homoerotic novels that indelibly shaped American literature and the pivotal revolution at the Stonewall Inn riots. The author suggests that as the United States grew in size, so did the tyrannical promotion of the heterosexual union as the "ideal relationship." Evidence of abundant gay soldiers in World War II surprises almost as much as the lengths they took to interact with one another. Considering more recent events, Bronski ends with the AIDS activism of late-'80s radical group ACT UP and the still-simmering gay-marriage argument. A lucid, cerebral treatise on gay culture from the point of view of a clever historian who maintains that "the heritage of LGBT people is the heritage of Americans." Required reading for both established and newly emerging members of the gay community—and far beyond.(Kirkus Reviews, February 1, 2011)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
394882
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Bronski, Michael
Dewey number
306.766
Index
index present
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Series statement
ReVisioning American history
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Gays
  • Homosexuality
  • Homosexuality
Label
A queer history of the United States, by Michael Bronski
Instantiates
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references and index
Control code
000046369031
Extent
xx, 286 p.
Isbn
9780807044391
Lccn
2010050225
System control number
(OCoLC)662402765
Label
A queer history of the United States, by Michael Bronski
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references and index
Control code
000046369031
Extent
xx, 286 p.
Isbn
9780807044391
Lccn
2010050225
System control number
(OCoLC)662402765

Library Locations

    • Lionel Bowen Library and Community CentreBorrow it
      669-673 Anzac Parade, Marouba, NSW, 2035, AU
      -33.938111 151.237977
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