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Bisexuality in the United States: A Social Science Readerby Paula C. Rodriguez Rust
Synopses & Reviews
For years bisexuality was considered merely a transitional stage between a person's presumed heterosexuality and true homosexuality, or vice versa, and was thereby regarded with suspicion by the lesbian and gay community and contempt by the straight world. The study and understanding of bisexuality has surpassed the stereotyped representations of previous eras (e.g., Basic Instinct), but few books attempt to seriously engage the subject as a whole. Paula Rust at last rectifies this absence in the literature by presenting the first interdisciplinary and comprehensive review of social scientific research and theory about bisexuality.
With contributions by sociologists, psychologists, historians, political theorists, and others, the book yields an overall picture of what we know, and what we don't know, about the subject. The book provides a wealth of information about the lives and experiences of bisexual people. Articles cover early research in which bisexuality was conceptualized as situational homosexuality, pioneering research on bisexuality as an authentic sexual orientation, scholarship on bisexuality in the context of AIDS research, the phenomena of bisexual chic and biphobia, queer theory, and the contemporary relationship between academia and political activism. Selections include theoretical and empirical studies from social science perspectives as well as popular writings about the growth of the bisexual movement in the 1980s and 1990s.
Book News Annotation:
This reference or text for college use presents reprints of theoretical and empirical articles, including examples of each of the major genres of research on bisexuality, arranged chronologically to illustrate the development of research on the subject. Some of the articles (30 in all) are easily understood by the nontechnical reader; others use technical jargon or advanced statistical analysis. Editor Rodri<'i>guez-Rust (SUNY, Geneseo) introduces each of nine sections with an essay discussing the historical and scientific context of various themes. An extensive bibliography covers literature on bisexuality in the US from before 1970 through 1999.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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