February 21, 2015

How the Germans invented gay rights

Schopenhauer proceeded to expound the dubious theory that nature promoted homosexuality in older men as a way of discouraging them from continuing to procreate.
Nationalism, misogyny, and anti-Semitism were rampant in these masculinity-obsessed circles, and Hirschfeld’s Jewishness became a point of contention. He was deemed too worldly, too womanly, insufficiently devoted to the glistening Aryan male.
the theatre and music critic Theo Anna Sprüngli, who, in 1904, spoke to the Scientific-Humanitarian Committee on the subject of “Homosexuality and the Women’s Movement,” helping to inaugurate a parallel movement of lesbian activism. Sex between women was never explicitly outlawed in imperial Germany—Paragraph 175, the anti-sodomy law, applied only to men—but lesbians found it no easier to live an open life. Employing the alias Anna Rüling, Sprüngli proposed that the gay-rights and feminist movements “aid each other reciprocally”; the principles at stake in both struggles, she wrote, were freedom, equality, and “self-determination.” References to George Sand and Clara Schumann in her speech betray an essentially Romantic vision.
Hirschfeld offered sex advice to straight couples, advocated more liberal divorce laws and birth control, collaborated on the first primitive sex-change operations, and generally acquired a reputation as the “Einstein of sex,” as he was called on an American lecture tour. To the masculinists, Hirschfeld appeared to be running a sexual freak show. Adolf Brand published crude anti-Semitic attacks on Hirschfeld in the pages of Der Eigene. Some of Brand’s associates were flirting with Nazism, and not just in a metaphorical sense; one of them later became the lover of Ernst Röhm, the head of the Brown Shirts.
In the early thirties, German leftists tried to tarnish the Nazis by publicizing Röhm’s affiliations and affairs.
To Hirschfeld, gender was an unstable, fluctuating entity; the male and the female were “abstractions, invented extremes.”

из статьи в НьюЙоркере про немецкий каминаут 19-20 вв
большие пассажи о Radszuweit, который пытался сделать гомосексуализм респектабельным и мейнстримным

No comments:

Post a Comment