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Historian to Discuss Sexual Orientation

October 02, 1996|DADE HAYES

Gay historian Jonathan Ned Katz, whose book "The Invention of Heterosexuality" asserts that sexual orientation is a societal construction rather than an "immutable, normal feature of human behavior," will speak tonight at Cal State Northridge.

The talk will be drawn from the book, which was published last year.

In the book, Katz tracks a century's worth of societal views of heterosexuality to prove it is "an invented tradition." He writes that the word itself was an early attempt to describe people who are bisexual.

Katz also says in the book that modern feminists and radical lesbians have targeted the term "heterosexual" as "an organized practice of unequal power in which men dominate women and heterosexuals dominate homosexuals."

Prior to his latest book, Katz wrote a "Gay/Lesbian Almanac," published in 1983, and the 1976 tome "Gay American History."

His talk, sponsored by the campus Institute for Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay and Transgender Studies, will begin at 7 p.m. in the West Valley Room of the University Student Union. The campus is at 18111 Nordhoff St. For more information, call (818) 677-2011.

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