'The Homosexual Society' Home Office Report From 1958 And Its Types Of Gay Man

Britain was a very different place in 1958.

Britain was a very different place in 1958 - especially if you were a gay man.

The 1950s homosexual was spoiled for choice as to just which niche strand of sexuality he chose to indulge in, all laid bare in a remarkable government report from the time.

The Bodley Head

'The Homosexual Society' by sociologist Richard Hauser was commissioned by the Home Office and its general tone is set on its inside cover which reads:

He makes concrete proposals for preventive measures in the present breeding-places [sic] of homosexuality, and for the better handling of the problem [sic] when it occurs.

Hmm.

In 1950s:

  • Homosexuality was illegal.
  • In 1954 there were 1,069 gay men in prison in England and Wales.
  • Chemical castration was offered as an alternative to imprisonment, the fate that befell Alan Turing amongst others.

In 2016

  • Homosexuality is legal.
  • Gay marriage became legal in 2014.
  • And it's not just the UK...

Anyway, rampant historical homophobia aside, the report does make for a fascinating if completely ludicrous read and insight into social attitudes at the time.

As highlighted by stand-up comedian Ivan Kirby, the best/worst thing about it is its comprehensive list of the different types of homosexual.

Let's begin...

The Married Man (Upper Class)
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The Married Man (Middle Class)
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The Married Man (Working Class)
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The Self-Isolated Homosexual
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The Fully Sublimated Homosexual
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The Homosexual Prostitute: The Young Volunteer
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The Homosexual Prostitute: The Call Boy
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The Homosexual Prostitute: The 'Cottage' Type
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The Homosexual Prostitute: The Pub And Club Type
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The Homosexual Prostitute: The 'Roller'
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The Sugar Daddy
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'Married' Homosexual Partners
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The Self-Masturbator
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The Pub Type
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The Club Type
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The Homosexual 'Friend'
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The Prison Queer
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The Ship's Queer
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The War Queer
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The Demoralised Married Man
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The Homosexual Alcoholic
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The 'Guilty' Homosexual
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The Religious Homosexual
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The Rebel
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The Psychopath
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The 'Cottage' Type
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The Homosexual Voyeur
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The Sadist-Masochist
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The 'Abnormal' Homosexual
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The 'Toucher'
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The Homosexual 'Virgin Chaser'
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The Promiscuous Homosexual
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The Woman Hater
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The 'Body Builder'
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