Not Straight, Not White: Black Gay Men from the March on Washington to the AIDS Crisis

Research output: Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook


This compelling book recounts the history of black gay men from the 1950s to the 1990s, tracing how the major movements of the times—from civil rights to black power to gay liberation to AIDS activism—helped shape the cultural stigmas that surrounded race and homosexuality. In locating the rise of black gay identities in historical context, Kevin Mumford explores how activists, performers, and writers rebutted negative stereotypes and refused sexual objectification. Examining the lives of both famous and little-known black gay activists—from James Baldwin and Bayard Rustin to Joseph Beam and Brother Grant-Michael Fitzgerald—Mumford analyzes the ways in which movements for social change both inspired and marginalized black gay men.

Drawing on an extensive archive of newspapers, pornography, and film, as well as government documents, organizational records, and personal papers, Mumford sheds new light on four volatile decades in the protracted battle of black gay men for affirmation and empowerment in the face of pervasive racism and homophobia.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Place of PublicationChapel Hill
PublisherUniversity of North Carolina Press
Number of pages272
ISBN (Electronic)9781469628073
ISBN (Print)978-1-4696-2684-0
StatePublished - Mar 2016

Publication series

NameJohn Hope Franklin Series in African American History and Culture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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