Hanne Blank, is the queerest book I have read in quite some time.
describes the history of heterosexuality as a concept in Western
thought and in American culture. While there have always been people
with different-sex attractions, Blank explains that prior to the
nineteenth century, people didn’t think of sexuality in terms of
identity: there were only specific behaviors. During the nineteenth
century scientific craze for creating taxonomies for everything, and the
craze for using the nascent field of modern psychology as a basis for
moral and legal judgments, the words “heterosexual” and “homosexual”
were both invented.
Queerly Bookish is a column I write for Diffuse 5, a Boston-based
collection of resources for the LBTQ community. The column presents book
reviews and notes on the Boston literary scene, including events,
publications, and more.