When Brooklyn Was Queer: A History
The never-before-told story of Brooklyn’s vibrant and forgotten queer history, from the mid-1850s up to the present day.
"A romantic, exquisite history of gay culture." —Kirkus Reviews, starred
“[A] boisterous, motley new history...entertaining and insightful.” —The New York Times Book Review
Hugh Ryan’s When Brooklyn Was Queer is a groundbreaking exploration of the LGBT history of Brooklyn, from the early days of Walt Whitman in the 1850s up through the queer women who worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard during World War II, and beyond. No other book, movie, or exhibition has ever told this sweeping story. Not only has Brooklyn always lived in the shadow of queer Manhattan neighborhoods like Greenwich Village and Harlem, but there has also been a systematic erasure of its queer history—a great forgetting.
Ryan is here to unearth that history for the first time. In intimate, evocative, moving prose he discusses in new light the fundamental questions of what history is, who tells it, and how we can only make sense of ourselves through its retelling; and shows how the formation of the Brooklyn we know today is inextricably linked to the stories of the incredible people who created its diverse neighborhoods and cultures. Through them, When Brooklyn Was Queer brings Brooklyn’s queer past to life, and claims its place as a modern classic.
What people are saying - Write a review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Big_Bang_Gorilla - LibraryThing
This is, as one might hope, an excellent account of its stated subject. Additionally, the author casts his net pretty widely and adds many tangents, usually interesting, that extend into other areas ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Charlotte_Kinzie - LibraryThing
Hugh Ryan is an interesting fellow, so when I saw this book was coming out I was intrigued! Hugh is a curator of queer history, a writer and speaker and New York is his home. If someone was going to ... Read full review