Cruising: An Intimate History of a Radical Pastime

By Alex Espinoza
First Published: June 4, 2019
Genre(s): HistoryLgbtqQueerSexuality

Posted on: January 06, 2020 :: Reading Suggestions (My Library)

My Review/Notes


“Espinoza’s book stands out as a beacon for future queer writers, thinkers, and activists. Reading these accounts, I felt myself drawn into a past both wonderful and strange, a world I hope we will continue to celebrate and preserve.” –Garrard Conley

From ancient Greece to Grindr, the underground practice of cruising has changed in fascinating ways, and also not at all.

Acclaimed author Alex Espinoza takes readers on an uncensored journey through the underground, to reveal the timeless art of cruising. Combining historical research and oral history with his own personal experience, Espinoza examines the political and cultural forces behind this radical pastime. From Greek antiquity to the notorious Molly houses of 18th century England, the raucous 1970s to the algorithms of Grindr, Oscar Wilde to George Michael, cruising remains at once a reclamation of public space and the creation of its own unique locale—one in which men of all races and classes interact, even in the shadow of repressive governments. In Uganda and Russia, we meet activists for whom cruising can be a matter of life and death; while in the West he shows how cruising circumvents the inequalities and abuses of power that plague heterosexual encounters. Ultimately, Espinoza illustrates how cruising functions as a powerful rebuke to patriarchy and capitalism—unless you are cruising the department store restroom, of course.

Notes are currently being imported and may not be here just yet, or do not exist.