Cover

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pp. 1-2

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 3-8

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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IOU

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pp. ix-x

Every book is a community. This one is no exception. I have written it neither for myself nor by myself. It bears the imprint of many friendships and many sources of support, moral and otherwise. Throughout this long process, I have relied on the kindness of strangers and on the tough and tender demands of those close to me. ...

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Prologue: My Father and I

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pp. 1-22

My relationship with my father was a disaster. Or at least that’s how it often felt to me. Let me give you an example. One day in the fall of 1998, my father and I took a little walk through the Marais, the old and emblematic Jewish neighborhood of Paris where he once lived and worked. ...

Part I. The Marais

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[1] The Old Neighborhood

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pp. 25-74

It was a marshland. It was a fashionable neighborhood for the aristocracy. It was a dilapidated enclave in the heart of Paris where poor immigrant Jews first settled before moving up in French society—or not. It was later rehabilitated and transformed into a prime real estate area and a magnet for foreign tourists. ...

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[2] A Queer Ghetto

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pp. 75-110

It works almost like clockwork. Every culture, national or otherwise, periodically identifies a threat to its very foundation and core principles. If the danger isn’t there—and it seldom is—it must be invented or at least wildly exaggerated. The idea is simple and the phenomenon well known: ...

Part II. The Queerness of Community

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[3] Things Past

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pp. 113-149

Am I the only one who thinks that Remembrance of Things Past wasn’t such a bad En glish title for Proust’s A la recherche du temps perdu after all? Not so much because of its Shakespearian reference, but because Proust’s novel is essentially about, well, things of the past—chief among them, I believe, Jewishness and queerness ...

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[4] Disaster, Failure, and Alienation

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pp. 150-182

The sentences are instantly recognizable and their effect all the more disastrous in that they often come in familiar forms and settings from people you know and like. The voice of a relative at the other end of a long-distance phone call, the lover across a restaurant table, the friendly doctor you’ve been seeing for years ...

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[5] The Queerness of Group Friendship

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pp. 183-221

A few months before my father died and just weeks after I saw him alive for the last time, an old friend of mine paid him a visit. Sophie and I were in high school together. She was smart, funny, seductive, and just plain stunning. (She still is, if you care to know.) ...

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Epilogue: My Father and I

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pp. 222-242

I spent most of 2002 in Paris doing research for this book. During that time, my father made several brief trips there, as he often did even when I was not around, to visit my sister and her kids. He and I soon settled into our own little routines. ...

Notes

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pp. 243-250

Bibliography

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pp. 251-260

Index

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pp. 261-268