A Brief History of Cures For Homosexuality

9.16.2009

By Noah Michelson

Last week, British prime minister Gordon Brown issued an apology
-- at the behest of tens of thousands of petition-signers -- for the
government’s persecution of Alan Turing, a mathematician and World War
II code breaker who committed suicide after undergoing chemical
castration to “treat” his homosexuality in the 1950s. Chemical
castration -- in which hormones are injected to suppress sex drive --
is just one of the gay “therapies” -- ranging from inhumane to
downright absurd -- doctors devised over the centuries.

Over at Out.com we're taking a look at nine other barbaric, strange, and/or inhumane "treatments" unleashed on queer people over the years including hypnosis, prayer, and even bicycle riding. While we've come a long way since we were subjected to electroshock therapy to cure us of our "unnatural urges," it never hurts to be reminded of where we've been, what we've fought to overcome, and the battles we've won so that hopefully no one will ever have to go through what Alan Turing went through ever again.

See the slideshow here.

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