Allen Young (writer)

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Allen Young
Allen Young.JPG
Born (1941-06-30) June 30, 1941 (age 78)
Liberty, New York
OccupationJournalist, author, editor

Allen Young (born June 30, 1941) is an American journalist, author, editor and publisher who is also a social, political and environmental activist.

Early life[edit]

Allen Young, born in Liberty, New York, on June 30, 1941, to Rae (Goldfarb) Young and Louis Young. His parents, both secular Jews, spent their youth in New York City, then relocated to the hamlet of Glen Wild (estimated pop. 100) in Fallsburg in the foothills of the Catskills, and started a poultry farm, also providing accommodations for summer tourists in this region known as the Borscht Belt. He was a red diaper baby.[1][2] He graduated from Fallsburg Central High School and received his undergraduate degree in 1962 from Columbia College, Columbia University. Following an M.A. in 1963 from Stanford University in Hispanic American and Luso-Brazilian Studies, he earned an M.S. in 1964 from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. After receiving a Fulbright Award in 1964, Young spent three years in Brazil, Chile and other Latin American countries, contributing numerous articles to The New York Times,[3] The Christian Science Monitor and other periodicals.

Liberation News Service and SDS[edit]

Young returned to the United States in June 1967 and worked briefly for The Washington Post before resigning in the fall of that year to become a full-time anti-Vietnam War movement activist and staff member of the Liberation News Service.[4][5][6][7] Young, Marshall Bloom, Ray Mungo and others worked in the office at 3 Thomas Circle producing the news packets that were sent to the hundreds of underground newspapers bi-weekly or tri-weekly.[8] A member of the Students for a Democratic Society[9][10] he was part of the Columbia University protests of 1968[11] and was among more than 700 arrested.[12] When the Liberation News Service split in two in August 1968 Young became a recognized leader of the New York office.[1][9][13] In February and March 1969 Young went to Cuba, where he was instrumental in the organization of the Venceremos Brigade.[10][14] Young became disillusioned with the Castro regime after observing the lack of civil liberties and other freedoms, and especially the government's anti-gay policies.[12][15] After the Mariel Boatlift he wrote Gays Under the Cuban Revolution,[16] breaking with those New Leftists who continued to defend the Cuban Revolution.

Gay Liberation[edit]

After the Stonewall riots in New York City, Young became involved in the Gay Liberation Front.[17] During the second half of 1970 he lived in the Seventeenth Street collective with Carl Miller, Jim Fouratt, and Giles Kotcher[12][18][19] where he was involved in producing Gay flames.[14] Young wrote frequently for the gay press, including The Advocate, Come out!,[20] Fag Rag, and Gay Community News among others. His 1972 interview with Allen Ginsberg, which first appeared in Gay Sunshine[21][22] is often reprinted and translated.

Young has edited four books with Karla Jay including the ground breaking anthology Out of the Closets.[23][24]

North Quabbin[edit]

Young moved to rural Massachusetts in 1973 to an 'intentional community'. Carrying a sign which read Royalston, Mass. population 973 he attended the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights.[25] He was a reporter and assistant editor for the Athol Daily News from 1979–1989, and Director of Community Relations for the Athol, Massachusetts Memorial Hospital, 1989-99. He joined the Montague Nuclear Power Plant protests shortly after Sam Lovejoy's toppling of the weather tower in 1974. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust, and in 2004 received the Writing and Society Award from the University of Massachusetts Amherst English Department "honoring a distinguished career of commitment to the work of writing in the world." Since 2009, he has been writing a weekly column, entitled Inside/Outside, for the Athol Daily News.[26]

Works and publications[edit]

  • Gay Sunshine interview with Allen Ginsberg. Grey Fox Press. 1974. ISBN 978-0-912516-05-9.
  • The gay report: lesbians and gay men speak out about sexual experiences and lifestyles. Summit Books. 1979. ISBN 978-0-671-40013-2.
  • Gays under the Cuban revolution. Grey Fox Press. 1982. ISBN 978-0-912516-61-5.
  • North of Quabbin: a guide to nine Massachusetts towns. Millers River. 1983. ISBN 978-0-912395-00-5.
  • North of Quabbin revisited: a guide to nine Massachusetts towns north of Quabbin Reservoir. Haley's. 2003. ISBN 978-1-884540-64-6.
  • Make hay while the sun shines: farms, forests and people of the North Quabbin. iUniverse. 2007. ISBN 978-0-595-45353-5.
  • Thalassa: one week in a Provincetown dune shack. Haley's. 2011. ISBN 978-1-884540-23-3.
  • The man who got lost: North Quabbin stories. Haley's. 2012. ISBN 978-1-884540-98-1.
  • Left, gay and green: a writer's life. CreateSpace. 2018. ISBN 978-1-977816955.

Edited anthologies[edit]


  1. ^ a b McMillian, John (2011). Smoking typewriters : the sixties underground press and the rise of alternative media in America. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-531992-7.
  2. ^ "Louis Proyect : the unrepentant Marxist". 2009-05-06. Retrieved 14 Apr 2011.
  3. ^ Young, Allen (1967-03-26). "'City of the Green Seas' Brazil's Fortaleza". The New York Times. Retrieved 2019-09-11.
  4. ^ Mungo, Raymond (1970). Famous long ago : my life and times with Liberation News Service. Boston: Beacon Press. ISBN 978-0-8070-6182-4.
  5. ^ Marshall Bloom Papers, 1959-1999, Amherst College, Archives & Special Collections
  6. ^ Glessing, Robert (1970). The underground press in America. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. ISBN 978-0-253-20146-1.
  7. ^ Dreyer, Thorne. "The movement and the new media". Archived from the original on 11 May 2011. Retrieved 15 Apr 2011.
  8. ^ Slonecker, Blake (2010). "We are Marshall Bloom : sexuality, suicide and the collective memory of the Sixties". The Sixties : A Journal of History, Politics and Culture. 3 (2): 187–205. doi:10.1080/17541328.2010.525844.
  9. ^ a b Leamer, Laurence (1972). The paper revolutionaries : the rise of the underground press. New York: Simon and Schuster. ISBN 978-0-671-21143-1.
  10. ^ a b Sale, Kirkpatrick (1973). SDS. New York: Random House. ISBN 978-0-394-47889-0.
  11. ^ Rimer, Sara (April 25, 1988). "Columbia's rebels retake campus for a 20th reunion". New York Times.
  12. ^ a b c Jay, Karla (1999). Tales of the Lavender Menace. Basic Books. ISBN 978-0-465-08364-0.
  13. ^ Diamond, Stephen (1971). What the trees said. Delacorte.
  14. ^ a b Marotta, Toby (1981). The politics of homosexuality : how lesbians and gay men have themselves a political and social force in modern America. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 978-0-395-29477-2.
  15. ^ Imagining our Americas : towards a transnational frame. Durham: Duke University Press. 2007. ISBN 978-0-822-33961-8.
  16. ^ Young, Allen, 1941- (1981). Gays under the Cuban Revolution. San Francisco: Grey Fox Press. ISBN 0912516615. OCLC 7836517.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  17. ^ Bateman, Geoffrey (August 10, 2005), "Gay Liberation Front" (PDF),, retrieved 2007-10-15
  18. ^ Duberman, Martin (1993). Stonewall. Dutton. ISBN 978-0-525-93602-2.
  19. ^ Smash the church, smash the state! : the early years of gay liberation. City Lights Books. 2009. ISBN 978-0-87286-497-9.
  20. ^ Brass, Perry. "Coming out into Come out!". Archived from the original on 2011-10-04.
  21. ^ Carter, David (2004). Stonewall : the riots that sparked the gay revolution. New York: St. Martin's. ISBN 978-0-312-20025-1.
  22. ^ Picano, Felice (2007). Art and sex in Greenwich Village : gay literary life after Stonewall. New York: Carroll and Graf. ISBN 978-0-7867-1813-9.
  23. ^ The violet quill: the emergence of gay writing after Stonewall. New York: St. Martin's. 1994. ISBN 978-0-312-11091-8.
  24. ^ D'Erasmo, Stacey (April 4, 1999). "Out of the closet and into the streets". The New York Times. Retrieved August 21, 2018.
  25. ^ "March on D.C." Windy City Times. Retrieved 13 Jul 2011.
  26. ^ Young, Allen (2018-07-11). "After 10 years, Allen Young's last Inside/Outside column". Athol Daily News. Retrieved 2019-09-11.

External links[edit]