Leila J. Rupp: A Desired Past: A Short History of Same-Sex Love in America



Students respond very well to history texts that do not shy away from the highly personalRupp does a good job of giving a uick overview of the essentialist and constructionist schools of thought among the historians of sexuality Perhaps best of all she insists on the use of the term same sex sexuality rather than Lesbian or Gay recognizing that the latter terms are perhaps too easily associated with the essentialist argumentAll in all a brief but well constructed text ideal I hope for the classroom and for the curious general reader revealing and informativea good read good book interesting to look at the topic of same sex over history needed this for a college class but ill be keeping it for suture reference This is an historical essay but nevertheless engaging like a romance Reccomended to whom wants their stories to be histor. Uals races and classes or take in such a broad chronological and thematic range but rather that it does all this with such verve lucidity and analytical rigor An elegant inspiring survey John Howard Journal of American Histor.

Y since my own view of female sexuality is not limited to just the male female attraction and copulation To me This fall semester 2001 I will be teaching a course in Lesbian and Gay history at my community college In preparation for this course I looked at many different books hoping to find an ideal survey text for an introductory course in GLBT history Alas Rupp s book falls short of the ideal but is nonetheless the best brief introduction to the history of same sex sexuality available on the market today I will be using her book in my class this fallWhat I appreciate about this text is her almost seamless interweaving of personal experience with historical narrative I realize that traditionalists tend to find this practice either unprofessional or self indulgent or both but I delight in it More importantly I have noted that my. Ame sex desire across the country and the centuriesMost extraordinary about Leila J Rupp's indeed short two hundred page history of 'same sex love and sexuality' is not that it manages to account for such a variety of individ.

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Leila Rupp has done a competent job of examining same sex relationships in American life beginning with colonial attitudes all the way through the coming out of the closetera of our own time She has laid aside her historian s objectivity to tell us bits of her own life story I hadn t realized that many same sex involvements were looked upon tolerantly in earlier times The entrenched positions pro and con that are present today are anomalies considering the history she provides One comes away from the book also with an appreciation for the confusions and mysteries that still cloud our view of same sex attachments No one has the answers and no research thus far has explained why things happen this way As a hetero wife and mother of four I must admit that I have very little understanding of the feelings of gays and lesbians especiall. With this book Leila J Rupp accomplishes what few scholars have even attempted she combines a vast array of scholarship on supposedly discrete episodes in American history into an entertaining and entirely readable story of