Alan Bray

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Alan Bray (13 October 1948 – 25 November 2001) was a British historian and gay rights activist. He was a Roman Catholic and had a particular interest in Christianity's relationship to homosexuality.

Early life[edit]

Bray was born in Hunslet, Leeds, to a working-class family.[1] His mother died when he was 12, an event that profoundly affected his relationships.[2] He attended secondary school in Leeds, where he met his lifelong partner Graham Wilson. He attended Bangor University and spent a year at an Anglican seminary before beginning a career in civil service.

Gay rights activism[edit]

He became involved with the Gay Liberation Front in the 1970s and actively campaigned for gay rights.[2] His interest in sexual politics influenced his work on history, which culminated in two books. His second book, The Friend, was published posthumously.

Legacy[edit]

The Roman Catholic Caucus of the Gay and Lesbian Christian Movement, of which Bray was a member, instituted a series of Alan Bray Memorial Lectures on Catholic theology and homosexuality. British historians Michael Hunter, Miri Rubin, and Laura Gowing co-edited the book Love, Friendship and Faith in Europe, 1300–1800 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005), a collection of essays inspired by Bray's idea of finding some universal component of homosexuality within the experiences of intimacy and friendship without "locating a discourse that identifies persons as homosexual."[3] Nick Rumens's Queer Company: The Role and Meaning of Friendship in Gay Men's Work Lives (Ashgate, 2011), is also inspired by Alan Bray's scholarship.[4]

Bibliography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Aldrich, Robert (2000). Who's Who in Contemporary Gay and Lesbian History: From World War II to the Present Day. Psychology Press. 
  2. ^ a b Gee, Stephen (18 December 2011). "Obituary: Alan Bray". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  3. ^ Gowing, Laura; Hunter, Michael; Rubin, Miri (2005). Love, Friendship and Faith in Europe, 1300-1800. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 1-4039-9147-2. 
  4. ^ Nick Rumens, Queer Company: The Role and Meaning of Friendship in Gay Men's Work Lives, Ashgate, 2011, p. 29