Evans, Arthur Oral History Interview
Span Dates: 1998
Volume: Oral history interview
This oral history interview includes Evans' memories of the Stonewall Riots, the March on Washington, his childhood experiences with religion, gender roles, the counterculture movement, zaps, AIDS, writing, witchcraft, and education. It discusses individuals Arthur Bell, Dick Cavett, Harvey Milk, and Harry Hay as well as the organizations he founded. Of interest is his discussion of the Radical Faeries.
Arthur Evans was born in 1942 in York, Pennsylvania, and attended Brown University after graduating from high school. At Brown, he described his circle of friends as 'militant atheists' combating the harmful effects of organised religion. Although he had known that he was gay from about the age of ten he remained closeted until he read that many homosexuals lived in Greenwich Village, New York. He dropped out of Brown University and moved to Greenwich Village in 1963 and became the lover of Arthur Bell. Arthur Evans resumed his studies at City College of New York, graduating with a philosphy degree in 1967. He began a doctoral program in Greek philosophy at Columbia University and became active in anti-war and gay civil rights protests. Some weeks after the Stonewall riots in 1969 he joined the Gay Liberation Front (GLF) and in late 1969 co-founded the Gay Activists Alliance (GAA). In November 1970, Arthur Evans and Marty Robinson appeared as guests on the Dick Cavett show, as the first militant gay activists to appear as guests on national television.
Splitting with Arthur Bell in 1972, Evans moved to Seattle and formed the Weird Sisters Partnership and began homesteading in Washington State at a site named New Sodom.
Arthur Evans began publishing his historical research and political strategies in 1973 in the gay journal Out and the Advocate. In 1974, Evans moved to San Francisco and in 1975 formed Faery Circle which combined neo-pagan consciousness, gay sensibility, and ritual play. In 1976 he gave a series of lectures called 'Faeries" and these led to the 'Radical Faeries'. He was also involved with Bay Area Gay Liberation, similar to the GLF and GAA.
In 1986 he published his research as the Critique of Patriarchal Reason in 1997.
A transcript of the interview can be found at the archives. To see a brief description of the interview use the search box on the finding aid for the GLBT Historical Society Oral History Collection GLBT-OH.
This interview is housed at the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society of Northern California in San Francisco. A transcription is available.
Gay Spirituality | Neo-Pagan/New Age Movements/Occultism/Spirituality | Radical Faeries | Evans, Arthur | Hay, Harry | AIDS | Civil Rights Movement | Gay Liberation Movement | International Human Rights | Stonewall Riots (NYC) | California | New York | New York City | San Francisco | Washington