from Toby Johnson's book GAY PERSPECTIVE:
While I was working as a psychiatric counselor in a gay mental health clinic in the Tenderloin District of San Francisco, I met Harvard-trained political science and sociology scholar (and nicknamesake) Toby Marotta. (How we met)
After Joseph Campbell, Marotta--with his irrepressible enthusiasm for gay consciousness as the flower of modern countercultural thought and his own successful demonstration of revolution through consciousness change--has had the greatest influence on my intellectual life. (At one time, I mythologized Toby as my Guardian Angel).
Together we launched ourselves into literary careers, beginning with the revision of Toby's massive Harvard doctoral dissertation on the rise of the modern gay and lesbian rights movement which was published as The Politics of Homosexuality: How Lesbians and Gay Men Have Made Themselves a Political and Social Force in Modern America. We compiled a series of interviews with gay Harvard classmates of his that appeared in the book Sons of Harvard: Gay Men in the Class of 67. And we worked together in a federally-funded study of gay hustlers and teen runaways, which I summarized in In Search of God in the Sexual Underworld. I'd been a gay counselor and activist, but from Toby I learned the rich and complicated history of the movement. With him I began to understand my interest in religion and spirituality in the context of gay liberation.
Read about Toby Marotta's vision of positive, life-affirming gay culture Read about The D.A.F.O.D.I.L. Alliance of Gay Mental Health workers in San Francisco in 1979:
a great example of successful community activism.
Read about the URSA study Toby and Toby worked together in of
teenage boys involved in gay prostitution
Currently, Toby Marotta is teaching people how to use the Internet for education and self-help. His specialty is on-line medicine.
Green Cleaning Institute
Toby Marotta is author of a small book called AIDS-Preventing Sexual Hygiene on sexual hygiene based, interestingly, in the cleanliness practices of Zorastrianism. The book is subtitled: "Complement Condom Use by Gargling, Douching, and Washing After Sex."
It's a terrible mistake, Marotta argues, to think there's nothing you can do if you make a mistake in judgment and get yourself into an act of unsafe sex. There are ways to wash afterwards (with a vinegar solution, for instance) that can be shown effective in reducing spread of microorganisms.
This site features a collection from Toby Marotta's extensive archives of gay culture and history.
Toby Marotta's books are available used. Click on the links to see available stock and how to order:
The Politics of Homosexuality
Sons of Harvard: Gay Men in the Class of '67
Toby Marotta and I have both been called Toby since birth (for me, actually even before; it was my parents' nickname for me as a fetus). For both of us it's a nickname not based on our given names. We were born almost exactly six months apart. Marotta in Massachusetts; me in Texas.
He was working in a city-sponsored study of social service agencies in downtown San Francisco; I was working in a mental health agency. AND I happened to be on intake at the front desk when he came in. We quickly discovered the parallels and coincidences in our lives. We got to be close friends and then started working together when I offered to help him convert his dissertation into a publishable book.
We worked in a study together of teenage boys involved in gay prostitution in New York, San Francisco, and Boston primarily. We roamed around big cities at night talking to the boys about their lives. As a mental health clinician, I was focused on social service agencies and visited federally funded runaway shelters to observe how they handled boys involved in gay hustling.
Between us, I came to be known as Toby Won and he was Toby Too. We were given these names by a client of mine named Harry who I counseled at the clinic during a suicidal period in Harry's life. So since he lived, he declared "Toby won." Later Harry met Toby Marotta--and worked with us in the hustler study for a while. So Marotta was Toby Too.