The definitive account of the Stonewall Riots, the first gay rights march, and the LGBTQ activists at the center of the movement.
“Martin Duberman is a national treasure.”—Masha Gessen, The New Yorker
On June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York's Greenwich Village, was raided by police. But instead of responding with the typical compliance the NYPD expected, patrons and a growing crowd decided to fight back. The five days of rioting that ensued changed forever the face of gay and lesbian life.
In Stonewall, renowned historian and activist Martin Duberman tells the full story of this pivotal moment in history. With riveting narrative skill, he re-creates those revolutionary, sweltering nights in vivid detail through the lives of six people who were drawn into the struggle for LGBTQ rights. Their stories combine to form an unforgettable portrait of the repression that led up to the riots, which culminates when they triumphantly participate in the first gay rights march of 1970, the roots of today's pride marches.
Fifty years after the riots, Stonewall remains a rare work that evokes with a human touch an event in history that still profoundly affects life today.
A police raid on the Stonewall, an unlicensed Greenwich Village gay bar, set off a series of riots in the summer of 1969 that mark the birth of the modern gay and lesbian political movement. Duberman ( Paul Robeson ) re-examines this event through the vibrant, intertwined portraits of six people--two lesbians, three gay men, one transvestite--whose lives converged at the Stonewall Rebellion and in the militant movement it spawned. Politically, his six subjects run the gamut from ex-priest Jim Fouratt--a leftist and Yippie cohort of Abbie Hoffman--to Foster Gunnison, who devoted his energies to moderate gay causes and later became a conservative. Yvonne Flowers, a black feminist, overcame her suspicion that the gay movement was not open to people of color, while transvestite Sylvia Rivers faced hostility from lesbians. Duberman, himself gay, exposes schisms in gay liberation that pitted gay men against lesbians, male chauvinists against feminists, whites against blacks. Photos. First serial to Grand Street; QPB selection.