Towards a Quaker View of Sex

Heron-Fairn-Gorman Letters re: Publication


Letters between George Gorman (Friends Home Service Committee) and Alastair Heron & Duncan Fairn (study editors) reveal the rush to prepare for printing and distribution.


HSC Quaker Group on Homosexuality records, Friends House, London.


15th January, 1963

Alastair Heron,
149, Brookdale Avenue,

Dear Alastair,

You will be receiving through the post the amendments made by members of the small committee. We are going to have a terribly hard job to get this published by the 17th February, and I still have not heard yet from the printers whether they can do it: however, we are doing out best to persuade them to help us out and I have to add a note to the foot of this letter telling you that all is well.

Both the Home Service Committee readers have warmly accepted the text and have encourage me to go ahead with its publication. One of them makes the following points:
1. Scattered through it are occasional remarks which are not essential, and may be thought more hurtful than helpful, e.g., those pencilled on pages XX and x1.
2. Does one assume that all Friends know the meanings of the Latin words by convention used? Glossary?
3. p. 34. Give all publishers or none.
4. There is an unconscious assumption that all boys go to boarding school. There is nothing about what happens to children at day school. Asa an anti-boarding school man, I'd have liked a paragraph on this point, which seems to have some importance.

With regard to point 1 the section he notes on page 82 begins at the end of line 15 "It is sobering to note that...", and on page 19, on line 19, "Unfortunately, it appears that..." On point 2, this will be covered by the Glossary which you are to supply.

The reader makes one further point, as follows:
'I'm a little doubtful about the title, as I understand it, this has grown from a study of homosexuality to s study of sex. But it doesn't really live up to its title, for it is weak on the side of Love/Sex in Marriage. (Main references are pp. 22-24 and parts of Chapter IV).

I think this aspect vital, for the more constructive, exciting, joyful, etc., etc., sex is in marriage, and the more marriage is based on principles of love which includes sex and which are based on religion, the less will be the attraction of sex outside marriage. Obviously, one can't do anything about this text, but could we think in terms of a similar group producing a complementary and equally constructive paper, not on Christian marriage, but on the Principles of Love and Sex i n Marriage?'

i that that we must accept the title and hope that at some future date perhaps a further study on this subject can be made.

Duncan telephone me last night, and assured me that you could get the text back to the printer we select by first-post on Monday morning. It is on this basis that I am urging them to help us. I will let you know immediately the name and address of the printer we decide to use. As the text will be very clear I see no season to print this in galley form, but to get the proofs; this would save a considerable amount of time. Am I right in assuming that you will read the proofs?

I am sorry for all this rush at the last, and you must have been terribly over-worked in tackling this. I think you have made a splendid job and only hope that other members of the committee will not start sending in too many alterations.

Yours ever,
George H. Gorman

Prison Commission
Horseferry House
Dean Ryle Street
London SW1

21st January 1963

My dear George,

Thanks to you and your staff Alastair Heron and I got the document off to the post yesterday afternoon after working on it until quarter to one on Sunday morning and most of Sunday until post-time at half-past three. I think it's a jolly good bit of work now and I can't tell you how grateful we are for all the help you and your folks have given.

One or two little requests that occurred to us in relation to publication:

(a) As soon as the page proof is ready we thought it would be as well if you sent that to the B.B.C., as a follow-up to the draft which you've already sent, as there are certain quite significant changes of emphasis, mostly in the nature of making the thing more definite and it might be a helpful to them to see it at the page proof stage.

(b) Asthe firm will be pulling a page proof we rather hope that you would give directions for the following to be supplied with proofs at that stage; one to yourself, two to Alastair, two to your proof reader, one to Kenneth Barnes, one to Anna, and one to me, and one to Reginald Smith!

(c) Having thought about the dates and times we believe that it would be the right thing to do to have publication date as 9 o'clock on the morning of February 18th, in other words, to follow the broadcast of Meeting Point the night before.

(d) If you agree, do you think you can persuade the printers and binders to pull off review copies for the following papers and others which may occur to yourself at least a week in advance? The papers which we thought of were the following: "Observer", "Sunday Times", "Guardian", "Times Educational Supplement", "New Society", "New Statesman", "Spectator", "The Friend", "The Wayfarer", "The Church of England Newspaper", "The Methodist Records", and others of like kind that you will know of, "The Lancet", "The British Medical Journal", "The Listener", "The Economist", "Medical News", and copies to the National Marriage Guidance Council, and the Central Council for Health Education. I suggest that you also send a copy, even though I am anonymous, to the Editor, "The Prison Service Journal", Staff College, "Wakefield, Love Lane", and also one to the "British Journal of Criminology".

I hope you will approve of the little note of gratitude we have written of you, of the Committee and of Jean James in particular. I have also tried to square Reginald Smith and his amour propre in the same note!

With grateful thanks.

Your ever, Duncan

Richard Fox thinks it might be a good idea to have your cuttings collected. Have you a means or news--do you use an agency?

George H. Gorman
Home Service Committee
Friends House,
Euston Road,
London, N.W. 1

25th January 1963

Duncan Fairn,
Prison Commission,
Horseferry House,
Dean Ryle Street,
London S.W. 1

My dear Duncan,

Many thanks for your letter.

In reply to your points - (A) I had it in mind to send one proof to the B.B.C. as soon as it ready; if I can spare more I will certainly do so, the only snag is that by asking for more proofs it does tend to hold up receiving any of them. This also answers your point (B) I have asked the printers to supply as many copies as they can up to the number mentioned in your letter in the hope that they can do this without any undue delay. (C) Publication date causes a little difficulty as t he "Friend" is very anxious if possible to make reference to it in their issue of February 15th; also, if wew are going to send it to the Sunday papers they will want to be able to comment on it on the morning of the 17th, therefore, assuming we get it through in time, I think we should pass the publication date for Friday 15th February.

Thanks for the massive review list in (D). In addition to the delay problems mentioned above, there is a further complication about review copies. We are proposing to send these to the national press, certain provincial papers, the Press Association, and the respectable Sunday papers. As you probably realise, the Press is terribly touchy if they should think they are being excluded. Clifford Haigh assures me that we should try to treat them all on the same level and send all our review copies out at the same time to that no-one can say a certain journal has received favoured treatment. (not even the Prison Service Journal!) Clifford feels that we might avoid a l;ot of sensational misrepresentation by sending a handout with the document, giving a general summary of its ideas. Would you feel like writing this, in about five hundred words? If not I thought I might ask Charles Radfield, who has already read the text for the Home Service Committee, and is used to preparing this sort of thing, to have a go.

As far as your postscript is concerned, I have received a note from Richard Fox and will add his collection of people to the review list.

I think that is all for the moment,

Yours ever,
George H. Gorman


Alastair Heron,
149 Brookdale Avenue,
Wirral, Cheshire.

4th February, 1963.

Dear Alastair,

Your corrected proofs and the original copy of the Mss arrived here this morning. My warmest congratulations to you on working so speedily; you have outstripped all the other readers and I am now waiting for their copies before returning yours to the printer.

Duncan is preparing a 500 word handout for the press and Ii will arrange for this to be sent out with advance copies of the book. I am also seeing that all members of the group receive copies, and have lists of suggestions for journals to receive review copies.

So far I have not see a proof of the cover, but I am getting in touch with the printer today to find out what has happened about that.

Duncan feels rather strongly that you should be included in the Meeting Point programme and has been trying to get hold of Mr. Hunkin at the B.B.C. to tell him so. I must say I agree with Duncan and hope he succeeds. In the meantime I have sent a copy of the proofs to Hunkin and another copy to Anna Bidder, who is meeting the B.B.C. on Wednesday.

Has your personal export order come through? I hope not--for our sakes--bot to retract that uncharitable view--I hope you are successful for yours.

With warmest greetings,

Yours ever,

George H. Gorman