Young Man from the Provinces by Alan Helms
A Gay Life before Stonewall

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Synopsis

Helms vividly brings to life the time just before Stonewall and the Gay Liberations Movement in this poignant, insightful, often humorous remembrance of his journey from a midwestern adolescence to a self-absorbed life as a male model in New York and Europe in the 1960s, ending with his self-acceptance as a gay man in a homophobic society.
 

About Alan Helms

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Alan Helms is a professor of literature at the University of Massachusetts.
 
Published November 9, 1995 by Faber & Faber. 208 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, Gay & Lesbian, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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There's plenty of engaging chat about his famous contacts (an affair with Tony Perkins and close friendships with Luchino Visconti and Noâl Coward stand out), but Helms's central subject is his own increasing misery amid glamorous surroundings.

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In his 20s and early 30s, Helms was at once the most privileged and self-destructive of men, at the giddy peak of his career as ``the most celebrated young man in all of gay New York.'' The Manhattan of the 1950s and '60s embraced the Columbia student as a ``U.T.''--a ``universal type,'' or ``som...

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