origin of "Bruce" implying "gay"?

Douglas G. Wilson douglas at NB.NET
Wed Jan 28 01:18:15 UTC 2004

I don't know whether Bruce Wayne had any influence on this. I have no
evidence one way or the other.

I can remember "Bruce" being used as a "gay" name in jokes etc. since about
1960 ... although men named Bruce were not and are not rare and I don't
think they have or had many jokes made about their name, in my environment.
The name cannot be fully associated with "gay jokes": if it were I don't
think there would be a Bruce Willis or a Bruce Springsteen.

My casual impression is that "Bruce" lends itself to these jokes etc.
*partly* (I don't think completely) by virtue of having an "s" sound so
that the name can be lisped. Other names which I've heard used in similar
"gay joke" context: "Francis", "Terence", "Lance", probably a few others
which I forget.

-- Doug Wilson

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