Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name



Women's and Gender Studies

Committee Chair

Theriot, Nancy M.

Author's Keywords

Homophile; Homosexual; Journalism; Gay; LGBT history; ONE Magazine


Gays--Books and reading; Lesbians--Books and reading; One (Los Angeles; Calif.); Gays--United States--History--20th century; Gays--United States--Identity


ONE was the first well-known gay and lesbian magazine published in the United States. This study examined the contents of ONE magazine, from January 1954 to December 1963, to determine if certain themes were present. These topics were stated in the form of questions: What causes homosexuality? Should homosexuals embrace "swish"? What is the homosexual's relationship to societal authorities? What is the role of religion in the homosexual's life? Are there connections between homosexuals over time and in different cultures? How does the homosexual fit into society? The results of the study indicate that scholars who have previously researched ONE discussed the two topics that arise most often in ONE: Should homosexuals embrace "swish" and what is the homosexual's relationship to societal authorities? The latter was a theme that was discussed three times more than any of the other seven identified themes. Two of the other topics occurred nearly as often as "should homosexuals embrace 'swish'" but have not yet discussed in other literature on this subject. These topics are: What is the role of religion in a homosexual's life and how does the homosexual fit into society? This thesis discusses those topics in detail. Additionally, this study included an analysis of the letters readers of the magazine wrote to the editors. The results show that some of the readers' interests were not adequately addressed in the articles of ONE; namely, readers were more concerned with loneliness/isolation and with "swish" behavior.