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Digital Subscriptions > Gay Times > Issue 496: Summer of Pride > 50 YEARS OF THE MOVEMENT.


The 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots is an incredible time to stop and look back, but it was not the beginning of the movement.

Chicago’s Society for Human Rights (1924) did not last long and was superseded by the Mattachine Society, founded by communist Harry Hay in Los Angeles in 1950, which spread across the country over the decade and is considered the first significant American gay rights group. The Daughters of Bilitis, the first lesbian group (named after the fictional Sapphic character), started by partners Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon in 1955, was primarily a social safe space but became involved with the political stru.le. Writers such as Gore Vidal, James Baldwin, Christopher Isherwood joined Radcliffe Hall in writing some of the only available fiction and would soon be joined by Audre Lorde and others.

In the UK, things were also changing. After high-profile prosecutions of Alan Turning, Lord Montagu of Beaulieu and actor John Gielgud, Sir John Wolfenden’s 1957 report lead to the Sexual Offences Act 1967 making it legal for two men over the age of 21 to have sex, strictly in private. (Lesbianism was not illegal).

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About Gay Times

Over the next 3 months, Gay Times Magazine will be celebrating the very essence of Pride – featuring voices and experiences of the entire LGBTQ initialism from all over the world. In our first volume, covered by Billy Porter, Valentina and Bretman Rock, we’re looking at the fluidity our modern community enjoys. These are people who have either fought for, given visibility to, or celebrated their power to express themselves in the most authentic (and downright fierce) way possible. Not only that, but they do it unapologetically, and with two fingers up to the patriarchy that governs what is considered ‘normal’. We also have a special extended travel section on everything New York City World Pride, giving you insight into the great metropolis that witnessed the birth of Pride. What’s more, there are interviews with the team bringing Tales of the City back to Netflix, making sure the enduring spirit of the queer community is front and centre. Elsewhere in the issue Ryan Jamaal Swain talks Pose, privilege and Pride; L Devine on bringing her sexuality front and centre in her music; Dustin Lance Black on his lifetime of activism; Angele Anang on being the first openly trans winner of Drag Race; Ryan O’Connell on why disabled people shouldn’t be used as ‘inspiration porn; plus fashion, opinion and art from all over the world.