by W. H. Kayy, M.D.
Published by Marvin Miller, Glendale, CA
223 pgs. • Find on Amazon.com
Reviewed by “J. H.” (Joseph Hansen)
To the bewildered Alice at the end of the Caucus Race, the Dodo explains, “Everybody has won, and all must have prizes.”
Dr. Kayy appears to believe everybody in history was homosexual and deserves the prize of being written up in his catalogue. Happily, his energy had limitations and there is only so much paper and print in the world. He was not able to include absolutely everyone.
It is a good thing. His prose style is awful. The thought of having to read volume after volume of it is stupefying. And his reasoning is worse than his writing. To understate the matter, a flexible sense of logic is required if we are to accept some of his nominees.
What, for example, are we to make of the inclusion of Lewis Carroll (Rev. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) who, as all the world knows, was enchanted by little girls and revolted by little boys. Odd his preferences may have been. But homosexual?
Then we are given poor Stephen Foster. Why? Well, for one thing, he “could not endure marriage.” And we all know what that means, don’t we? He was “closely attached to bis mother.” Well! What more proof of homosexuality do we need? He had a close male friend. Just watch that evidence piling up! He drank. Now, aren’t you persuaded?
August Strindberg, the Swedish playwright, “sought women aggressively…attracted a number of them…. He even succeeded in breaking up a marriage by courting another man’s wife, whom he eventually married.” Strindberg married, in fact, three times. “Woman is to me the earth and all its glory, the bond that binds…,” he wrote. But women did drive him to distraction. He didn’t like his mother and she didn’t like him. And we all know what that means.
Kayy’s muddled thinking is not confined to his case histories. It is evident in his introductory essay.
An unsevered, abnormal maternal attachment is doubtless a powerful factor in the case of many homosexuals…. Conversely the subconscious fear of a stern father who threatens the young man’s attachment to his mother, may act to force some personalities to homosexuality. The dynamics in cases where shocking marital tragedy has occurred in the family [may] disgust a person with the idea of married love, and give him a penchant toward individuals of his own sex…
There are pages of this drivel. Why did Dr. Kayy compile his book?
The facts are there for any serious student to read; certainly they are not pleasing to the faint-hearted…they are presented here purely in a spirit of scientific objectivity Possibly these findings may help incidentally to temper the medieval punishments, social and legal, now inflicted upon the hapless homosexual.
Possibly, but not probably.
The harsh fact is that most of us cannot gain the respect of our fellows by means of outstanding accomplishments in the arts, science, politics, war. Few homosexuals are Caesars, Leonardos, Wagners, Prousts. Applause is not what today’s homosexual needs. He needs acknowledgement of his right to respect as a human being. Contentment with the accomplishments of famous homosexuals of the past—and present—will cheat him of this end.
© 1966, 2016 by The Tangent Group. All rights reserved.
First published in Tangents 1.6, March 1966