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A kept man is a man who is financially supported by a wealthy, usually older, person who is either the man's spouse or close relative. Men may be kept by either a woman or by another man. Being "kept" could be seen as a form of male prostitution, especially if the relationship has a sexual dimension. The kept woman is a female version, and considered more common.
In popular culture
Kept Boy is a novel by noted author Robert Rodi.
Being a "kept man" was the theme of an episode from critically acclaimed sitcom "Ellen" originally aired on January 15, 1997 called "Joe's Kept Secret". In the episode, David Anthony Higgins' character, Joe, is kept by a significantly older woman, Madelaine, played by Florence Henderson.
The character of Joe Gillis in Sunset Boulevard is a "kept man" who is being "kept" by Norma Desmond, a famous star.
Throughout An American in Paris others allude to Jerry Mulligan being "kept" by Milo Roberts.
In Breakfast at Tiffany's, Paul Varjak is being kept by the character of Mrs. Failenson, whom Paul introduces to Holly as his decorator.
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