Author ORCID Identifier

0000-0001-7291-5056

Document Type

Book

Publication Date

2001

Abstract

“Life Projects” is Chapter 5 of the book Between Gay and Straight: Understanding Friendship Across Sexual Orientation (AltaMira Press, 2001). The timeframe spans from the fall of 1996 to January 1997. I’m taking a course on life history, and I ask a member of my research community, Gordon Bernstein, to participate in my project. During our interviews, Gordon teaches me about the ongoing process of coming out—to oneself, to other gay men, and to coworkers, friends, and family. Later, I grapple with elements of this network of gay male friends that can be unsettling, especially for women. I bemoan its obsession with appearance, and I question how gay male communities might become less exclusive and sexist. Taking this stance feels risky because it adds the entanglements of the critic role to those of researcher, friend, and advocate. By now, I’m a fully “vulnerable observer" (Behar, 1996).

Publication Title

Between Gay and Straight: Understanding Friendship Across Sexual Orientation [book]

ISSN

0759101116