The Association of (Gay) Suburban People

The time was March 1978; the setting was an American Legion Post in suburban Detroit; the event was a dance. An ordinary Saturday night in suburbia; yet not ordinary at all. The dance was sponsored by a gay organization, and it allowed the mostly closeted attendees to stake a discreet claim to public appearance — and to do so in a time of entrenched homophobia.

From the late ’70s to mid ’80s, in an era of entrenched homophobia, a group of gay suburbanites formed an organization that mixed pride and defiance, political rallies and Tupperware parties.




  • Alan Thomas
  • david-heymann
  • Sandy Isenstadt
  • Simon Sadler

Alan Thomas

Alan Thomas is a columnist for Places. He is Editorial Director for the Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Chicago Press and a photographer specializing in urban landscape.

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David Heymann

David Heymann is a columnist for Places. He is an architect, and the Harwell Hamilton Harris Regents Professor in Architecture at the University of Texas, Austin.

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Sandy Isenstadt

Sandy Isenstadt is a columnist for Places. He is a professor and Director of the Center for Material Culture Studies at the University of Delaware, specializing in the history of modern architecture.

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Simon Sadler

Simon Sadler is a columnist for Places. He teaches the history and theory of architecture, design, and urbanism across several programs at the University of California, Davis, where he is a professor in the Department of Design.

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