"gay" in "Bringing Up Baby"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Thu Aug 26 17:18:29 UTC 2010

At 1:09 PM -0400 8/26/10, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>Having just seen "Bringing Up Baby" again, I am surprised that the
>OED can continue to, in its June 2010 draft revision, bracket the
>following quotation as, presumably, "interpreted anachronistically".
>1938 D. NICHOLS & H. WILDE Bringing up Baby (film script, final
>revision) 35 David..comes on..in negligee... Aunt: Why are you
>wearing these clothes?.. David: Because I just went gay, all of a sudden.
>If it is not taken as specifically referring to a person as a
>homosexual (sense 4.d.(a)), it seems at least to be "(of a ... way of
>life, etc.) of or relating to homosexuals" (sense 4.d(b).  (Unless
>this use is taken only as cross-dressing?)  And a few of the later,
>but still bracketed, quotations, seem also to fit 4.d(b).
...paging Ron Butters, paging Ron Butters...


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