Researchers have discovered a previously unknown 149-page manuscript defending homosexuality.Historians in the News
tags: LGBT, WW II
Researchers have discovered a previously unknown 149-page manuscript defending homosexuality. The scholars have also documented the remarkable life of its author, a gay Jewish World War II veteran, Allen Bernstein.
“Bernstein’s eccentric essay – personal, sociological, and historical -- is a major discovery in gay American history,” said Jonathan Ned Katz , co-director of OutHistory.org, the website on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history. Katz, a long-time scholar of the subject, analyses the “MILLIONS” essay on OutHistory. “This adds one, rare, fascinating account to the small genre of homosexual defenses written or published in the U.S. in the twentieth century,” Katz declared.
The document is being published with supporting analyses on OutHistory on National Coming Out Day during LGBT History Month 2014,
Included are Bernstein’s original typed “MILLIONS” essay; a retyped, fully searchable version of the essay; Katz’s historical analysis of the essay; a brief biography of Bernstein by Drexel University’s Randall Sell, ScD ; and an introduction to all these works.
Sell, an associate professor at the Drexel University School of Public Health, found the manuscript in 2010 while searching the National Library of Medicine for the earliest uses of the term “queer” in reference to homosexuality. As a public health researcher whose specialty includes measuring and estimating population prevalence of homosexuality, Sell was particularly intrigued by the document’s title, “MILLIONS OF QUEERS.”
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