The last section of chapter three in A Queer History of the United States is called Same-Sex Desire and the Democratization of Race. I find this section to be very interesting, although I guess I've said that about every section of the book. Anyhow, these nineteenth century transcendentalist thinkers/writers, I talked about yesterday, were pro human equality with no fillers, no additives, no artificial flavors or colors. And they found a very clever way to .
Nineteenth century America, as we all know, was fearful of ''race mixing,'' especially male/female ''mixing'' because of the potential for sex and/or bi-racial off-spring. So, novels and adventure narratives used the less threatening interracial male/male ''romantic/intimate'' friendships, which I talk about in my post entitled Bosom Buddies, to address race with same-sex desire cloaked in the sub-text. These books, such as Moby Dick and Omoo: A Narrative of Adventures in the South Seas to name two, are considered classic American literature. This literature allowed a place for public discussion on ideas of citizenship, race, gender and sexuality. Although ideas on gender and homosexuality were cloaked in these works, a thinking person could easily have ''clocked'' them in the sub-text. With a few exceptions, these works offer our only depiction of same-sex behavior in the nineteenth century.
I think that what makes classic literature ''classic'' is that, it's so well written, there is always something new to discover about it as time passes. Another indication of a classic is a first of it's kind work, like Rainbow Plantation Blues. Okay, I just tooted my own horn, so what! It's the truth!
I'm not 100% sure if I've articulated my thoughts well in this post, so I'm considering it a work in progress. I might come back and edit it later.