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

Shapiro, Fred fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Fri Oct 16 14:00:26 UTC 2020

Not far-fetched at all.

Fred Shapiro

From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of James Landau <00000c13e57d49b8-dmarc-request at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
Sent: Friday, October 16, 2020 9:52 AM
Subject: Re: Further Thoughts on the 1931 Use of "Go Gay"

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

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