Waiting to Land: A (mostly) Political Memoir, 1985-2008

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Although best known for his acclaimed biographies, historian Martin Duberman is also a renowned memoirist who has plumbed his own life for truths that have meaning for us all. In the bestselling Cures, he carried his story up to 1970, focusing on his fear that homosexuality was pathological and on his desperate search for a therapeutic cure. Duberman's second autobiographical book, Midlife Queer, centered on the 1970s, by which time he'd thrown off his earlier doubts and become fully engaged in the worlds of gay politics and culture.
Waiting to Land takes Duberman's story up to the present day. As his public engagement deepens, Duberman finds himself increasingly at odds with the mounting assimilationism of the mainstream gay movement - and with the left itself, which Duberman has come to believe is smugly oblivious to the realities of gay life. Disaffection leads him to till crucial new ground, including the founding of the groundbreaking Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies (CLAGS) and serving as an original board member of Queers for Economic Justice.
Interweaving diary entries with letters and with reflections written in 2008, Waiting to Land incisively probes issues of crucial import for everyone. By turns moving, funny, provocative, and profound, this book is an unflinchingly honest and deeply important window into an extraordinary life.

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User Review  - yooperprof - LibraryThing

It's both a strength as well a limitation of this "mostly" memoir that Martin Duberman is a complete New Yorker. Not to criticize, but a lot of it did remind me of that classic "New Yorker" cartoon ... Read full review


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About the author (2009)

Martin Duberman is distinguished professor emeritus of history at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY), where he founded the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies, the first university-based LGBT research center in the United States. He is the author of more than twenty books, including three memoirs about his experience as a politically active gay man, and "The Martin Duberman Reader" (2013). A finalist for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize, Duberman has received a Bancroft Prize, two Lambda Literary Awards, the American Historical Association's Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Publishing Triangle's Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement. In 2012, Amherst College presented Duberman with an honorary degree of doctor of humane letters.

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