True Homosexual Experiences: Boyd McDonald and Straight to Hell

True Homosexual Experiences: Boyd McDonald and Straight to Hell

by William E. Jones




Boyd McDonald (1925-1993) had the makings of a successful life in the 1950s–an education at Harvard, a job at Time/Life–but things didn't turn out as planned. After 20 years of resentful conformity and desperate alcoholism, McDonald dried out, pawned all of his suits, and went on welfare; it was then that his life truly began.
From a room in a New York SRO hotel, McDonald published Straight to Hell, a series of chapbooks collecting readers' "true homosexual experiences." Following the example of Alfred Kinsey, McDonald obsessively pursued the truth about sex between men just as gay liberation began to tame America's sexual outlaws for the sake of legal recognition. Admired by such figures as Gore Vidal and William S. Burroughs, Straight to Hell combined a vigorous contempt for authority with a keen literary style, and was the precursor of the first queer 'zines decades later.
Containing in-depth interviews with friends and family members and a wealth of previously unpublished material, True Homosexual Experiences: Boyd McDonald and Straight to Hell is the first book devoted to this key figure of the American underground.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780996421812
Publisher: We Heard You Like Books
Publication date: 04/01/2016
Pages: 200
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

William E. Jones is an artist, filmmaker, and writer who was born in Ohio and now lives in Los Angeles. He has made two feature length films, Massillon (1991) and Finished (1997) which won a Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award, the documentary Is It Really So Strange? (2004). His work has been the subject of retrospectives at Tate Modern and Anthology Film Archives, and has been included in the 1993 and 2008 Whitney Biennials. His writing has appeared in Artforum, Bidoun, Frieze and Little Joe. His book Imitation of Christ was named one of the best photo books of 2013 by Time magazine.

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