Queer Avoidance, Vocabulary, Euphemisms, and the Language of Lesbians
9 Ways the Early Twentieth-Century Newspaper
Reviewed Broadway Plays & Avoided Saying the “L” Word
- “A Twisted Relationship” – New York Times, 1926
- “A Warped Infatuation” – New York Times, 1926
- “Tormenting Impulses” – World, 1926
- “Bondage” – World, 1926
- “The Poisonous Serpents Spell of Decadent Women” – Evening News, 1926
- “A Cancerous Growth” – Daily News, 1926
- “A Monstrous Sexual Perversion” – New York Evening Journal, 1934
- “L—N” – New York Herald Tribune, 1934
- “A Naughty Word” – New York Herald Tribune, 1934
16 (Ninetieth/Twentieth Century) Euphemisms for Lesbian Relationships
- Sentimental Friends
- Special Friends
- Romantic Friends
- Two Hearts in Counsel
- Love of Kindred Spirits
- Boston Marriages
- Roaring Girl
- Female Adventurer
Richards, Dell. Lesbian Lists: A Look at Lesbian Culture, History, and Personalities. Boston: Alyson Publications, 1990
Here’s a fascinating account of ‘The Captive’, the first play mentioned here.
Now to track down all these plays.
Me: You seem distracted. Are you tweeting again?
Amma: Yeah, CSK [Chennai Super Kings] are playing, so I have to tweet about mosquitoes.
Amma: It’s for good luck. We’ve discovered that whenever I tweet about mosquitoes, they hit a four or a six or get a wicket, or something.
Me: Who’s we?
Amma: My Twitter followers. We found this out a long time ago. So they’re expecting me to tweet about mosquitoes.
Me: And it really works?
Amma: Well this one time sadly we lost anyway – I had prepared so many tweets in advance of the match – I read all the wikipedia about mosquitoes and did so much research – but that day we lost! So I thought, oh, good luck is gone. But then I realised, no, I usually *spontaneously* tweet about mosquitoes. But this time I had planned it all in advance, that’s why it didn’t work.
Me: Makes sense.
Amma: I was tweeting about the symptoms for dengue and what to do if you find yourself – [switching track] Oh! I forgot to tell you. S___ Aunty’s sister-in-law got admitted in the hospital for dengue. [switching track] Oh! I can tweet about that now.
Amma: [typing sounds]