States of Desire Revisited: Travels in Gay America

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University of Wisconsin Pres, Sep 18, 2014 - Biography & Autobiography - 348 pages
States of Desire Revisited looks back from the twenty-first century at a pivotal moment in the late 1970s: Gay Liberation was a new and flourishing movement of creative culture, political activism, and sexual freedom, just before the 1980s devastation of AIDS. Edmund White traveled America, recording impressions of gay individuals and communities that remain perceptive and captivating today. He noted politicos in D.C. working the system, in-fighting radicals in New York and San Francisco, butch guys in Houston and self-loathing but courteous gentlemen in Memphis, the "Fifties in Deep Freeze" in Kansas City, progressive thinkers with conservative style in Minneapolis and Portland, wealth and beauty in Los Angeles, and, in Santa Fe, a desert retreat for older gays and lesbians since the 1920s.
White frames those past travels with a brief, bracing review of gay America since the 1970s ("now we were all supposed to settle down with a partner in the suburbs and adopt a Korean daughter"), and a reflection on how Internet culture has diminished unique gay places and scenes but brought isolated individuals into a global GLBTQ community.

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User Review  - dbsovereign - LibraryThing

A travel book that captures the pre-condom, pre-plague days like no other. Shows us the many venues that truly were where it was at back then. Also profoundly moving as it brings back memories of an ... Read full review


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About the author (2014)

Edmund White is the author of more than twenty books, including A Boy's Own Story, The Beautiful Room Is Empty, The Farewell Symphony, My Lives, City Boy, and Inside a Pearl: My Years in Paris. He lives in New York City and teaches creative writing at Princeton University.

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