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Men and Boys: An Anthology (1924)

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Men and Boys: An Anthology (New York, 1924) was the first, and extremely uncommon, anthology of homosexual literature to be published in America. The author, Uranian poet Edward Mark Slocum, was a professional chemist and graduate of Columbia University, who compiled the anthology anonymously and remains somewhat of a mystery today. His identity has been revealed by the research of several scholars (notably Timothy d'Arch Smith and Donald Mader), and the story of the anthology has been discussed in the only reprint of the edition (Coltsfoot Press, 1978).

The anthology commences with works from ancient Hebrew literature and progresses throught the poetry of the 1920s. Included are a selection of known Uranian poets, such as Digby Mackworth Dolben, Edward Cracroft Lefroy, Edward Emmanuel Bradford, John Gambril Nicholson, John Moray Stuart-Young, Edmund John, "Philebus" (John Leslie Barford) and John Addington Symonds. But there are also some surprising contributions from more traditional poets, such as Ernest Myers, William Alexander Percy, James Fennimore Cooper, Jr., Victor Starbuck, Katherine Mansfield, Willard Wattles as well as the anthologist himself. Described by Timothy d'Arch Smith as a "startingly thorough and well-informed anthology" it remains a classic in the field of gay literature and a cornerstone of collecting in the field. According to a prospectus issued by the anthologist, the book was issued in an edition of 150 copies, but relatively few are known to exist.

One copy online, formerly owned by Uranian poet Samuel Cottam, is selling at $1,000.[1] Thankfully, the book is available for free as a PDF on library genesis,[2] and we have archived a copy here.

References