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Duberman, Martin B.


DUBERMAN, MARTIN B. (1930– ), U.S. historian and playwright. Duberman, who was born in New York City, entered Yale University in 1948 and received his M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard University. From 1957 to 1961, he was history instructor at Yale. He then became an assistant professor at Princeton University and full professor in 1967. Duberman's research centered on the "middle period" of American history, with special attention given to the Civil War and Reconstruction, American radicalism, and intellectual history. His publications include Charles Francis Adams, 1807–86 (1961) and James Russell Lowell (1966). Duberman, himself an advocate of dissent and deeply concerned with the advancement of human rights, edited Antislavery Vanguard: New Essays on the Abolitionists (1965). He also wrote a number of plays, notably In White America (1964), a documentary on the American black.

After exposing glaring instances of homophobia in his history Black Mountain: An Exploration of Community (1971), Duberman himself became the target of homophobic attacks from his academic peers. Subsequently, he became involved in gay activism on academic, public, and private levels. With fellow gay scholars, he founded the Gay Academic Union (1973) and joined the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.

In 1971, Duberman resigned from Princeton to become Distinguished Professor of History in the field of gay and lesbian studies at Lehman College, the City University of New York (cuny), where he continued to teach. He was the founder and first executive director of the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies (clags) at cuny. The Martin Duberman Fellowship is a clags endowment awarded to a senior scholar (tenured university professor or advanced independent scholar) from any country doing scholarly research on the lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender/queer (lgbtq) experience.

Other publications by Duberman include The Uncompleted Past (1969), The Memory Bank (1970), Visions of Kerouac: A Play (1977), About Time: Exploring the Gay Past (1986), Paul Robeson (1989), Hidden from History: Reclaiming the Gay and Lesbian Past (1989), Cures: A Gay Man's Odyssey (1991), Mother Earth: An Epic Play on the Life of Emma Goldman (1991), Stonewall (1993), Midlife Queer: Autobiography of a Decade, 1971–1981 (1996), A Queer World: The Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader (1997), Left Out: The Politics of Exclusion: Essays 19642002 (2002), and the novel Haymarket (2003).

[Mark D. Hirsch /

Ruth Beloff (2nd ed.)]

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