The City By Armistead Maupin

Decent Essays

The San Francisco of the 1970s is a city immersed in the counterculture movement: It encouraged experimentation and tolerance for unconventional behavior, vices and eccentric politics. The culture rejected the principles of mainstream society and espoused living for one’s self. This philosophy of life attracted people from all over the United States to travel westwards to San Francisco. The promise of the counterculture fascinated people who were not satisfied with their current lifestyles. They came to the city in the hopes of reinventing themselves. Individuals sought to scape their past routines, to get away from the people and societies that burdened them. In the bohemian city, they aspired to find a place to belong. The characters in Tales of the City, by Armistead Maupin, convey these desires and frustrations in members of all social classes. The novel reveals the consequences that come with reinvention. As portrayed by Maupin, San Francisco signifies both a chance for liberation, and a life beset by secrets, whereby individuals are often haunted by their pasts. San Francisco’s culture allows for greater freedom, in part due to its sexual and gay liberation. In the midst of the counterculture and the hippie movement, San Francisco becomes a city that is more accepting of queer, unconventional behavior. Gays and lesbians come with the hope to live openly as homosexuals. Michael Tolliver exemplifies this desire. He is a young gay man who leaves Florida and his family

Get Access