For more than a century before gay marriage became a hot-button political issue, same-sex unions flourished in America. Pairs of men and pairs of women joined together in committed unions, standing by each other "for richer and for poorer, in sickness and in health" for periods of 30 or 40 - sometimes as many as 50 - years. In short, they loved and supported each other every bit as much as any husband and wife. In Outlaw Marriages, cultural historian Rodger Streitmatter reveals how some of these unions didn’t merely improve the quality of life for the two people involved but also enriched the American culture.
Among the high-profile couples whose lives and loves are illuminated in the following pages are Nobel Peace Prize winner Jane Addams and Mary Rozet Smith, literary icon Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas, author James Baldwin and Lucien Happersberger, and artists Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg.
©2012 Rodger Streitmatter (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
Graphic designer and University professor. I love comics and to be always learning something new!
interesting, mind-opening and lovely
Not really but it made me realize how a person cannot change the world but he/she can make his/her world a whole new place and that every little action counts.
I'm Audible's first Editor-at-Large, the host of In Bed with Susie Bright -- and a longtime author, editor, journo, and bookworm. I listen to audio when I'm cooking, playing cards, knitting, going to bed, waking up, driving, and putting other people's kids to bed! My favorite audiobooks, ever, are: "True Grit" and "The Dog of the South."
In Outlaw Marriages, cultural historian Rodger Streitmatter reveals that gay marriage is not a 21st century idea— and that in fact, there have always been numerous well-known gay couples who lived an "outlaw" life together, despite conventional mores.
Some of the notables profiled are playwright Tennessee Williams, literary icon Gertrude Stein, and movie legend Greta Garbo.
Not only were some of the last two centuries leading artists gay, but they were in committed relationships. Our Arts history is heavily influenced by these unknowns.
Who had the long-lasting relationships— and who had a tumultuous love life? Whose lover ended up being their muse for their most famous work? This book gives the answers.
The format of a series of biographies is hard to keep from being repetitive, but this book succeeds in remaining interesting throughout. Unfortunately the limited space given to each subject requires a degree of superficiality that limits one's understanding of each marriage, but the book remains worthwhile. The slow but inexorable pace of change is particularly well documented.
What this book actually points out is that, in the world of gaydom, homosexuals are not very much different than heterosexuals. Behind every famous (or even not so famous) individual there was one or several unnamed person or persons who, through fate, led that person to their fame. More often than not, they are never recognized, nor compensated, for their contributions that lead to that fame and fortune.
Hearing the true life stories of men and women and their partners is so needed in our world.
It is well crafted and supportive of the GLBT community.
The variety of men and women is very interesting. It shows the diverse nature of the GLBT community and that we've been around a long time.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.