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social sciences

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Kertbeny, Károly Mária (1824-1882)  
page: 1  2  

Ulrichs and Kertbeny entertained a vivid epistolary correspondence, but the two men's radically different views on sexuality (for example, Kertbeny was an enlightened liberal, Ulrichs a reformer with a social cause) and their diverging personalities (Kerbeny thought Ulrichs womanish and effete; Ulrichs dismissed Kertbeny as a jealous "grumbler") made a close friendship and collaboration impossible.

Kertbeny died in the Hungarian capital on January 23, 1882, officially from a stroke but reputedly from syphilis. Contrary to popular belief and probably because of his designation as "Dr. M." by Jäger (a designation perpetuated by Havelock Ellis and curiously persistent in modern scholarship), Kertbeny had no medical, scientific, or legal training.

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On June 29, 2002, the Lambda Budapest Gay Fellowship erected a tombstone in Fiumei Street National Graveyard to commemorate his largely forgotten achievement. To this day, his writings are available only in German. Relevant excerpts, however, are frequently translated.

Nikolai Endres

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Paragraph 175 was the German law prohibiting sex between men; strengthened by the Nazis, it was the statue under which homosexuals were sent to concentration camps.

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Bech, Henning. "A Dung Beetle in Distress: Hans Christian Andersen Meets Karl Maria Kertbeny, Geneva, 1860: Some Notes on the Archaeology of Homosexuality and the Importance of Tuning." Journal of Homosexuality 35.3-4 (1998): 139-61.

Deák, Ágnes. "Translator, Editor, Publisher, Spy: The Informative Career of Károly Kertbeny (1824-1882)." Hungarian Quarterly 39 (Spring 1998): 26-33.

Féray, Jean-Claude, and Manfred Herzer. "Homosexual Studies and Politics in the 19th Century: Karl Maria Kertbeny." Journal of Homosexuality 19.1 (1990): 23-47.

Halperin, David M. "How to Do the History of Male Homosexuality." GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 6.1 (2000): 87-123.

Herzer, Manfred. "Kertbeny and the Nameless Love." Journal of Homosexuality 12.1 (Fall 1985): 1-26.

Kertbeny, Károly Mária. Schriften zur Homosexualitätsforschung. Manfred Herzer, ed. Berlin: Verlag rosa Winkel, 2000.


    Citation Information
    Author: Endres, Nikolai  
    Entry Title: Kertbeny, Károly Mária  
    General Editor: Claude J. Summers  
    Publication Name: glbtq: An Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual,
Transgender, and Queer Culture
    Publication Date: 2004  
    Date Last Updated November 24, 2006  
    Web Address  
    Publisher glbtq, Inc.
1130 West Adams
Chicago, IL   60607
    Today's Date  
    Encyclopedia Copyright: © 2002-2006, glbtq, Inc.  
    Entry Copyright © 2004, glbtq, inc.  


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