Synopses & Reviews
The sweeping story of the struggle for gay and lesbian rights — based on amazing interviews with politicians, military figures, and members of the entire LGBT community who face these challenges every day: “This is the history of the gay and lesbian movement that we’ve been waiting for” (The Washington Post).
The fight for gay and lesbian civil rights — the years of outrageous injustice, the early battles, the heart-breaking defeats, and the victories beyond the dreams of the gay rights pioneers — is the most important civil rights issue of the present day. In “the most comprehensive history to date of America’s gay-rights movement” (The Economist), Lillian Faderman tells this unfinished story through the dramatic accounts of passionate struggles with sweep, depth, and feeling.
The Gay Revolution begins in the 1950s, when gays and lesbians were criminals, psychiatrists saw them as mentally ill, churches saw them as sinners, and society victimized them with hatred. Against this dark backdrop, a few brave people began to fight back, paving the way for the revolutionary changes of the 1960s and beyond. Faderman discusses the protests in the 1960s; the counter reaction of the 1970s and early eighties; the decimated but united community during the AIDS epidemic; and the current hurdles for the right to marriage equality.
“A compelling read of a little-known part of our nation’s history, and of individuals whose stories range from heart-wrenching to inspiring to enraging to motivational” (Chicago Tribune), The Gay Revolution paints a nuanced portrait of the LGBT civil rights movement. A defining account, this is the most complete and authoritative book of its kind.
"Inspiring and necessary reading for all Americans interested in social justice." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"...this volume will deservedly become a standard in the field." Library Journal (Starred Review)
"Faderman’s immense cultural history will give today’s LGBTQ activists both a profound appreciation of their forebears and the motivation to carry the struggle forward." Publishers Weekly
"A cogent, definitive history of the movement and a towering achievement by Lillian Faderman. It belongs in every GLBTQ home, definitely available in every public school library and sent to every homophobic politician in Washington." Huffington Post
"Ms. Faderman has ably drawn the map that future historians of the struggle will use to chart their courses." The Economist
"To read her is like viewing the AIDS quilt, which overwhelms the viewer with the care taken in each of its numberless panels." The New York Times
"This is the history of the gay and lesbian movement that we’ve been waiting for: compulsively readable, carefully anchored in the historical record, overflowing with riveting stories, human peculiarities and thoughtful analysis." The Washington Post
About the Author
Lillian Faderman is an internationally known scholar of lesbian history and literature, as well as ethnic history and literature. Among her many honors are six Lambda Literary Awards, two American Library Association Awards, and several lifetime achievement awards for scholarship. She is the author of The Gay Revolution and the New York Times Notable Books, Surpassing the Love of Men and Odd Girls and Twilight Lovers.