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May 30, 1993|CHARLES SOLOMON

MAKING HISTORY: The Struggle for Gay and Lesbian Equal Rights 1945-1990 by Eric Marcus (HarperPerennial: $14; 534 pp., illustrated). Marcus has compiled oral histories that trace four decades of civil rights battles, from the postwar "homophile" movement to contemporary activism. Men and women describe their search for identity despite persecution by military and civilian authorities, religious zealots and gay-bashers. Their accounts stress that the gay rights movement centers not on questions of morality or normalcy, but on the demands of law-abiding, tax-paying citizens for the rights guaranteed to everyone by the Constitution, regardless of the disapproval of others.

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