Polari regular Paul Baker writes about the word ‘gay’.
The word ‘gay’ has changed of late, writes Paul Baker, author of the Polari Dictionary. From happy to homosexual to naff, it may now be out of favour.
The adoption of gay was a major breakthrough in our never-ending two-steps forward, one-step back march to equality. Prior to us taking over the word en masse in the early 1970s it had meant ‘disposed to joy and mirth’, although it could also refer to prostitution or impertinence.