Richard Goldstein has been writing about the intersection of politics and pop culture for more than four decades, starting by covering the 1960s rock scene for New York’s Village Voice. He became a regular contributor and, eventually, editor and executive editor.
Goldstein frequently made waves even at the liberal Voice. He quickly came out in the newsroom, and in 1979, created the annual Queer Issue. An elegant and colorful writer-reporter, Goldstein both authored and edited a series of provocative essays about the devastation of AIDS, gay sexuality, and the birth of the activist movement led by Queer Nation and ACT UP. Simultaneously, Goldstein persevered in a not completely LGBT-friendly newsroom.
In 1982 (by which point he was executive editor), the Voice rejected a freelancer’s landmark piece on a disease which would become known as AIDS. Goldstein was fired by the Voice in 2004, a quarter-century after the first Queer Issue, but is still taking on the establishment. In The Attack Queers: Liberal Society and the Gay Right and Homocons: The Rise of the Gay Right, he unleashed an attack on the growing gay conservative movement led by activists such as Bruce Bawer and Andrew Sullivan.
His provocative prose is accessible in Village Voice archives and in several books, including 1 in 7: Drugs on Campus, Goldstein’s Greatest Hits: A Book Mostly About Rock ‘n’ Roll and Reporting the Counterculture.