The Homosexual Matrix —died in May 2003 at the age of 83, ju"/>

THE INTIMATE WORLD OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN

C. A. Tripp, Author, Jean Baker, Illustrator, Jean Baker, Introduction by , edited by Lewis Gannett. Free Press $27 (384p) ISBN 978-0-7432-6639-0

Psychologist, therapist and former Kinsey sex researcher Tripp—author of the 1975 classic The Homosexual Matrix —died in May 2003 at the age of 83, just after completing this riveting new study that makes a surprisingly compelling case for Lincoln's bisexuality. Tripp merges a sexual psychologist's knowledge with a prosecutor's eye for evidence as he scrutinizes letters, diaries and oral histories gathered by early Lincoln researchers. Seeing what others either could not or would not, Tripp itemizes in telling detail three homosexual liaisons from different stages of Lincoln's life. The first involved young Billy Green, a frequent bunk mate in New Salem during the 1830s. The second was a passionate union with the aristocratic Kentuckian, and Lincoln's lifelong friend, Joshua Speed in Springfield, Ill., during the 1840s (Tripp notes, refuting others' arguments, that poverty did not necessitate their long-term sharing of a bed). The last involved Capt. David V. Derickson, President Lincoln's bodyguard and intimate companion between September 1862 and April 1863; it is documented that the president shared his bed with him on numerous occasions during Mary Lincoln's frequent absences. Throughout the book, the most important factor is Tripp's knowledgeable sex therapist's eye running over key sources to detect telltale markers missed by previous writers who lacked Tripp's training. An Introduction by Jean Baker (biographer of Mary Todd Lincoln) and concluding comments from Lincoln scholar Michael Chesson help put Tripp's groundbreaking—and sure to be controversial—study into historical context. BOMC, InsightOut Book Club alternates. (Jan. 11)

Reviewed on: 01/10/2005
Release date: 01/01/2005
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Paperback - 343 pages - 978-1-56025-927-5
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