[Ads-l] Further Thoughts on the 1931 Use of "Go Gay"

James Landau 00000c13e57d49b8-dmarc-request at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
Fri Oct 16 13:52:44 UTC 2020

On Thu, 15 Oct 2020 00:36:09 Zone+0000  "Shapiro, Fred" <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU> posted:
<begin quote>A few days ago I posted about a 1931 headline using the phrase "go gay," in an article that was very much about homosexuality in the publication New Broadway Brevities.  I opined that this was the earliest known use of the term "gay" meaning homosexual.

Some cooler heads have suggested that this was not a specific reference to homosexuality, but rather simply an instance of a general usage of "go gay" meaning to become flamboyant. 
<end quote>
A far-fatched suggestion:  did "gay" acquire the meaning of male homosexual because of the impression that some (not all) male homosexuals are flamboyant in dress and manner?

James Landau
jjjrlandau at netscape.com

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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