RE: RARA-AVIS: In defense of JDM: Bludis

From: Mark Sullivan (
Date: 16 Sep 2002

"Among those men who may've been dealing with homosexuals and/or prostitutes a bit less harshly in the '60s, to stick to HB and its periphery, Gore Vidal, Nelson Algren, Harlan Ellison (the least little bit, perhaps), William Burroughs come to mind."

Burroughs dealing with homosexuals less harshly? Maybe, just maybe, in a more positive light, but I wouldn't say less harshly. I think Burroughs could easily be read as the embodiment of and cautionary tale against everything that straights were supposed to fear about the gay and/or drug underworlds (remember, Junkie was first printed as an exploitation novel) and reinforcement for those who felt something should be done about them. And couldn't pretty much the same be said for other Grove Press authors, such as Rechy and Selby, assuming they were read by straights, which they probably weren't, except maybe for titillation.


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