Analysis Of Ann Aldrich's 'We Walk Alone'

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Gay male, lesbian, and transsexual networks/communities, and cultural practices often had their own differences that coincided with meshing similarities. From the late 1940s to the 1960s, these identities were shaped through experiences of “the closet” and living a “double life,” among other factors. Alan Berubé explores the war’s impact on homosexual identity, speaking for both gay males and lesbians in “Marching to a Different Drummer: Lesbian and Gay GIs in World War II.” In “We Walk Alone,” Ann Aldrich helps identify the varying types of lesbians, addressing their intimate relationships with each other that are becoming more visible. Harry Benjamin touches more on the medical and scientific side of transsexualism and the obvious fact that…show more content…
It is often found that the stereotypical “butch” and “femme” pairing are more visible than other lesbian relationships. However, this does not mean that they do not exist. The ever-growing popularity of the lesbian social sphere has symbolized both difficulties and effects of identifying with such a label. The label or identity itself, though distinctly separating lesbians from “normal” heterosexuals begins to exhibit pre-existing conflict experienced by gay males: “there’s always been something wrong (Aldrich, 38).” This quote implies the conditioned and ingrained belief that homosexuality’s “taboo” existence was more than just wrong, but distasteful and something that society should look down upon for being an “abnormality.” Sometimes, this social reality for lesbians made it hard for them to “come out the closet” and be visible. This experience is exemplified as “The repressed lesbian has a harder time of it, for she is less aware of her abnormality (Aldrich, 41).” Additionally, to be able to clearly and accurately identify “the lesbian is to meet the many women she is at close range; to see her against her various backgrounds, hear her sundry voices, and familiarize yourself with the diverse facades of her several lives (Aldrich, 42).” Here, the presence of the “double life” is demonstrated to further analyze the lack of privileges that the lesbian community had, including the social aspect of their
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