The Velvet Rage: Overcoming the Pain of Growing Up Gay in a Straight Man's World The Velvet Rage discussion


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message 1: by Andy (new) - rated it 1 star

Andy There has to be other guy's out there that have read this book and were left wanting more.

Maybe I am just at a different place in my life than the people he references, but I didn't relate at all.

Has anyone read anything else that is a little more "all encompassing?"


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

The Velvet RageThe Velvet Rage by Alan Downs

My rating: 1 of 5 stars


Reading the Velvet Rage when I just finished a book by an ex-gay psychotherapist Richard CohenComing Out Straight: Understanding and Healing Homosexualityhas started making me wonder how far they really are in their assumptions about gay people.



Alan Downs in his book gives out some interesting advice and so does Richard in his book to cure people from homosexuality. The problem arises when both start diagnosing gay people. ALan downs sees gay people as being inherently shame driven. Anything a gay man does is becuase there is something underlying movtive behind it. Even the lustful and vain ,did i add hard! act of working out in the gym is " is to rely shame" (p. 186)"



What shocked me is his comment, " There are those involved in queer nation or the "radical fairies" that suggest that gay men are not meant to be in committed relationship. "Does the authour realize that most gay men do fall into the category of "fairies" and not the worked out, muscular and the most important word in Alan's lexicon, "successful" gay men. Does he also realize that it was these radical fairies that started the political movement of the queer nation that did give gay people, visibility, voice and rights.



The book is not all bad. The author does make some interesting and original points about "foreclosure" and "resolution". Each of us in our life has the choice when it comes to dealing with a dysfunctional pattern in our life: We can either "foreclose" on the present one only to find ourselves in a similar situation soon, or we can try the authentic route of "Resolving" the issue.



The author reveals more about his assumptions. " had been like so many of ours. He grew up in a middle class family"(p121, pp.4)Someone who saw him speak at a forum, and left without answering the audeinces question adn leaving them angry talked about how hep looked like a gym going gay who was a sucessful professional. Reading his book made me quite angry.. and I have started to wonder if Alan likes to make people Angry?



Since he dishes out advice, I have some for him. He should really give up his comfortable and rather wealthy practise i.e. leave his middle class background and try a new career change, maybe as a gay painter in the working class or marry one of the wealthier and ultra successful gay men he talks about, who hold these white parties in Malibus and share his sorry tales and theories about gay men with other socialities with some champagne and caviar.



Don't forget to invite me to that white party though!Another fellow book club member who is a gay white male and of similar view of the book, also posted that he hadn't attended such a wealth white party and am sure would want to join so can you make it two please...





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