Monday, September 5, 2011

Review: Kevin Walby on New York Hustlers

Barry Reay, New York Hustlers: Masculinity and Sex in Modern America. Encounters: Cultural Histories. Manchester, UK: Manchester University Press, 2010, 208pp. $US 35.00 paper (978-0-7190-8008-1), $US 90.00 hardcover (978-0-7190-8007-4)

New York Hustlers is a work of cultural history. Although not explicitly written for them, the book will nonetheless be relevant to sociologists interested in sex and gender, as it explores the “instability” and “untidiness” of categories of sexuality. Empirically, Reay’s book examines paid sex between men in New York during the middle of the twentieth century. More than a foray into sex between men and the slipperiness of labels, this book casts Alfred Kinsey’s research on male sexuality in new light by following one of Kinsey’s key informants: Thomas Painter.   Read more