Guittar, Nicholas. “Coming Out: The New Dynamics”, Lynne Reinner, 2014.
The New Coming Out
I must admit that when I heard about his new book, my first thought was that it is superfluous. Coming out is just no longer a big deal so I cannot imagine a need for a book about it. Of course that was before I actually had a chance to see the book and understand that it is a collection of personal interviews with youth and through them we get a better understanding of coming out and its process. What we really see here is how the dynamics of sexual identity are changing.
Author Nicholas Guittar shows that the norms of the mainstream still influence us as people with “non-normative sexualities”. There is no one recipe for coming out and we see the spectrum of experiences. It is indeed interesting that even though there are fewer people in the closet nowadays, we see that coming out is not a one-time event. Not only does it occur over a lifetime, it can occur many times in one day.
The work here is grounded in research and there is excellent analysis. Reading this reminds us, yet again, that inequality is everywhere and oppression is harmful—not just to the individual but to society at large.