Style Report | Myth of the Stylish Gay Man

Harmonious with a perception that has a grip on our society like Anna Wintour has on her Prada, a visit to a predominately gay neighborhood would resonate a sudden style enlightenment. Dropping by Dupont Circle should yield such sights as those that one would expect from the Montenapoleone, in Milan. And word on the street is, the fashionably challenged men and women should flock there like herds, notebook in hand. Lets get one thing straight, all gay men are not stylish! This is a myth - and the guy to the left is clear evidence of such.
Its not hard to backtrack the origin of this myth. The myth that is the Stylish Gay Man is older than you, me, and anyone alive today - think back to Louis XVI whose failure to consummate his marriage resulted in homosexual rumors, it started before that; its worth noting that he was exceptionally stylish. Since the beginning of mankind homosexuality has been associated with a vain and perhaps more-put-together aesthetic. And the generalization is without proper claim - Edward II, Quentin Crisp, Liberace, and many others only strengthened this myth, and as a result it waltzed right into the 20th and 21st century.
"This idea comes from how awareness of homosexuals grew over the last 40 or 50 years," says designer Isaac Mizrahi. "To someone who only knew of three gay people, it looked like all gay men were stylish."
In American, more specifically, the first openly gay men that society accepted as public figures were fashion designers. More so than that, TV in the eighties and nineties created this stereotypical 'gay sidekick' who opted to giving sartorial advice to their less-than-stellar girlfriends. Fast forward a decade or two and series like Queer Eye for the Straight Guy emerged into the world, and along with it the Verdis and the Cojocarus.
And although I see no end in sight for the Stylish Gay Man myth, we now have gay public officials who are beyond sartorial help and other public figures who put fault in the myth entirely (note, the above picture). Only now we have a new myth to diffuse, that all stylish men are gay. Now that's a twist for your ass, and mine.


Anonymous said...

The whole 'all stylish men are gay' issue is really disheartening and disgusting.

BryanBoy said...

^That's a bit disheartening. Why disgusting? Have we not passed small thinking like that?

James said...

So is the fashion world to blame?

Anonymous said...

I don't think the industry is to blame and I actually think that we have been seeing this myth fail for quite some time now. Perez Hilton dresses like a clown on steroids.

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