We live in a Time of the COVID-19 Pandemic. But we would be very foolish not to forget that it is just over 40 years since the world confronted AIDS and HIV. And we have had to live with it ever since. Looking back, those who were there find it hard to believe now how…
I have recently been involved in a new edited collection of personal stories by gay men. The Everyday Lives of Gay Men draws on the expertise of 12 contributors from different countries and fields, writing from an auto-ethnographic first-person approach. Putting the power of personal stories at the centre of the construction of sophisticated narratives of gay…
World AIDS Day 2017 : Everybody Counts Once again it is World AIDS Day. HIV continues to be a major global public health issue, having claimed more than 35 million lives so far. In 2016, 1.0 million people died from HIV-related causes globally. There were approximately 36.7 million people living with HIV at the…
On Thursday February 11 2016, my dear friend, mentor and guru John Gagnon died at the age of 84. He had experienced problems with his leg and his eye, but the final period starting in October brought a terminal pancreatic cancer. He has been an inspiration and will be loved and missed by many.…
A new book has been launched this week. The Ashgate Research Companion to Lesbian and Gay Activism provides scholars and students with a comprehensive and authoritative state-of-the-art review of the current research in this subject. Each of the twenty-two specially commissioned chapters develops and summarises their key issue or debate in…
Cosmopolitan Sexualities is now published My latest book was published in May 2015 by Polity Press. You can find details and a study guide for it by clicking here or the tab at the top: Cosmosexualities It is reviewed in the Times Higher Education here, along with my ‘full profile, at: Review’ From the cover:…
Inequality “There’s been class warfare going on for the last twenty years, and my class has won. We’re the ones that have gotten our tex rates reduced”. Warren Buffett Last Sunday saw the publication of the Sunday Times Rich (April 26th 2015). It showed that the wealth of Britain’s richest people has more than doubled…
Oh cruel world!
Humanity’s inhumanity to humanity is haunting the ballot box.
Welfare states tumble
Health services crumble
With austerity conniving.
Rich get richer
Poor get poorer
With markets driving.
Suffering is ignored
With prejudices thriving.
Oh cruel world!
Humanity’s inhumanity to humanity is haunting the ballot box
Against Austerity Austerity is anti- humanist. It takes money and wealth as the starting point rather than people. It celebrates usury, credit and the rich. It erodes human value; and soon becomes insensitive to the widespread suffering of human beings that it generates. Austerity invariably fails – making for more hardship and inequality. The…
‘The Making of the Modern Homosexual’ Revisited
A discussion between Ken Plummer, Jeffrey Weeks and other contributors chaired by Gregg Blachford; with an update with Róisín Ryan-Flood was held in the Sociology Department at the University of Essex on Thursday March 19th 2015. The Making of the Modern Homosexual was published in June 1981 in hardback and paperback. The book was inspired by Mary McIntosh’s article ‘The Homosexual Role” Social Problems Vol. 16, No 2, Fall 1968 which was republished in the book and followed by a discussion. The book was developed in an early workshop, linked to an Open University Second Level Intro to Sociology Course (Study Section 8), and held at Essex in 1979. (The O.U. programme ran for over a decade, throughout the 1980’s.)
The Book ‘Blurb’
‘Is the “homosexual” a type of person that has been with us in various guises throughout history? Is he or she simply a “being” that we are slowly discovering and understanding better? Or is the “homosexual” simply an invention of our century? The authors of this original and important new work take this last view and argue that although “same-sex” sexual experiences may have existed throughout history, the notion of the “homosexual” is a peculiarly modern idea, which has profound consequences in the structuring of recent homosexual experiences. The essays in this book take the contemporary construction of the homosexual as their common concern’.
The Book Contents
Part One: The Making of a Sociology of Homosexuality
- Building a Sociology of Homosexuality (Ken Plummer)
- ‘The Homosexual Role’ (Mary McIntosh); with interview (McIntosh, Weeks, Plummer)
Part Two: Directions for Enquiry
- Homosexual Categories (Ken Plummer)
- Discourse, Desire And Sexual Deviance: Some Problems In The History Of Historiography (Jeffrey Weeks)
- Liberating Lesbian Research (Annabel Faraday)
Part Three: The Making Of The `Modern Male Homosexual: Explorations In Research
- Pansies, Perverts And Macho Men: Changing Conceptions Of Male Homosexuality (John Marshall)
- Gender Confusions: Psychological And Psychiatric Conceptions Of Transvestism And Transexualism (Dave King)
- Male Dominance And The Gay World (Gregg Blachford)
Appendices on Research
Some images from those early days -1980
A day meeting to discuss the book and organised by the Open University who used many images for their programme broadcast throughout the 1980’s. The photos show Jeffrey Weeks, Ken Plummer, Gregg Blachford, John Marshall, Mary McIntosh and Annabel Faraday.