Alain LeRoy Locke

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Alain LeRoy Locke (September 13, 1885 – June 9, 1954) was an American writer, philosopher, educator, and patron of the arts.

Quotes about Alain LeRoy Locke[edit]

  • His man-loving identity ... apparently derived from what appears to be a fusion of the Whitmanesque concept of "manly," "comradely" love with a Greek model of homosexuality in which an older man forms a "noble friendship" with a younger man. ... Locke displayed sexual interest in young men who were apparently not gay-identified. Several of his correspondents came to develop a positive identity as men-loving men. As one man wrote, his introduction to Locke's particular model of same-sex love, which usually occurred via Locke's suggestion of a canon of works that discuss the topic of male same-sex unions sympathetically, made him feel as though he had "awakened from a long sleep": "It opened a bright beautiful way for me, one that was natural and wholesome." Along with a man-loving identity, Locke introduced his correspondents to a specific gay discourse. Looking that the coded terms figuring prominently in this discourse, such as "spiritual affinity," "perfect friendship," and "stimulating camaraderie," it can be recognized that they denote honor, masculinity, and depth. Locke thus opened up to these same-sex-interested men a gay identity without regard for contemporary dominant views linking homosexuality to degeneracy, sickness, or gender inversion.
    • A. B. Christa Schwarz, Gay Voices of the Harlem Renaissance (2003), p. 12

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