BOOKS: ‘When Brooklyn Was Queer’, telling the story of the borough’s LGBT past

In a new book, Hugh Ryan explores the untold history of queer life in Brooklyn from the 1850s forward, revealing some unlikely truths.

One recurring theme in his research that fascinated Ryan was how Brooklyn’s rise from rural backwater to New York’s second city mirrored the rise in interest in sex and gender studies and – sadly – the rise in homophobia, bigotry and abuse.