Outstanding Academic Title 2005 - Choice Magazine The period between the two world wars was crucial in the history of homosexuality in Europe. It was then that homosexuality first came out into the light of day. Just crawling out from under the Victorian blanket, Europe was devastated by a gruesome war that consumed the flower of its youth. Tamagne examines the currents of nostalgia and yearning, euphoria, rebellion, and exploration in the postwar era, and the bonds forged at school and on the battlefront, in a scholarly treatise charting the early days of the homosexual and lesbian scene. Berlin became the capital of the new culture, and the center of a political movement seeking rights and protections for what we now call gays and lesbians. In England, the struggle was brisk to undermine the structures and strictures of Victorianism; whereas in France (which was more tolerant, over all), homosexuality remained more subtle and nonmilitant. However, the social and political backlash soon became apparent, first of all in Germany.
More conservative attitudes arrested the evolution of the new mores, and it was not until the 1960s that the new wave of the sexual revolution once again swept the continent. Tamagne's work outlines the long and arduous journey from the shadows toward acceptability as the homosexual and lesbian community sets out to find a new legitimacy at various levels of society. She weaves together cultural references from literature, songs and theater, news stories and private correspondence, police reports and government documents to give a rounded picture of the evolving scene. * "The first volume argues that homosexuality, a 'high culture' sort, enjoyed a golden age consequent upon the Great War's liberalization of morals. In volume 2, reaction and repression march through the 1930s. [...] A lively read. Highly recommended." - CHOICE Magazine * Florence Tamagne holds a PhD from the prestigious Institute of Political Studies in Paris, France. This is her second book tracing the evolution of homosexuality in Europe.