The Comfort of Men
WHA, $19.95 pb, 0855614196
Where women lead, men generally have the sense to follow. Eventually. Feminist fiction, lesbian fiction have developed ahead of gay fiction in Australia. This is one of the many ideas acknowledged or explored in Dennis Altman’s welcome addition to literature about homosexual relationships.
Central to the novel are the various ways in which the personal explodes in to the political. The time is the 1960s and Altman deftly weaves his narrative of the lives of his four protagonists through such historical moments as the 1966 Federal elections, the hanging of Ronald Ryan, the 1969 moratoriums, and the peace and women’s movements generally.