Times Square Red, Times Square Blue

Last updated

Times Square Red, Times Square Blue
Times square red times square blue.jpg
Dust jacket from the first edition
Author Samuel R. Delany
CountryUnited States
Genre Non-fiction
Publisher New York University Press
Publication date
Media typePrint (Hardback)
Pages224 (Paperback ed.)
ISBN 0-8147-1919-8
OCLC 40838591
306.74/09747 21
LC Class HQ146.N7 D45 1999

Times Square Red, Times Square Blue is a non-fiction book written by science fiction author Samuel R. Delany and published in 1999 by the New York University Press. The book is a compilation of two separate essays: Times Square Blue and ...Three, Two, One, Contact: Times Square Red. The 20th Anniversary Edition, published in 2019, contains an introduction by Robert Reid-Pharr.



Times Square Blue

Times Square Blue is a first-hand narrative of Delany's (often referred to as "Chip," or, occasionally, as "The Professor") sexual exploits in Times Square's pornographic movie theaters with other men (some homosexual, some heterosexual) from 1960 through the mid-1990s. He also describes, in detail, his relationships with these men inside and outside the theatres.

...Three, Two, One, Contact: Times Square Red

The second essay in the book discusses the nature of social relations within the realm of urban studies. Delany proposes two kinds of relationships, "contact" and "networking," and analyzes the content and benefits of each. Throughout, Delany draws upon the redevelopment of Times Square to provide examples of these relationships and the ways they are affected by urban infrastructure. He also refers extensively to Jane Jacobs' The Death and Life of Great American Cities .


The starred 1999 review in Publishers Weekly describes it as being "a provocative and persuasively argued cri de coeur against New York City's gentrification and the redevelopment of Times Square in the name of 'family values and safety,'...(Delany) writes frankly about his gay sexual adventures in the peep shows, porno movie houses and bars of Times Square. This personal history is juxtaposed with a detailed record of how the city's red light zones have changed over the past 40 years." [1] In Salon, the work is described as "remarkable" and "brilliant." [2]

An excerpt from Times Square Red, Times Square Blue is included in Eileen Myles' 2022 collection Pathetic Literature. [3]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Joanna Russ</span> American writer

Joanna Russ was an American writer, academic and feminist. She is the author of a number of works of science fiction, fantasy and feminist literary criticism such as How to Suppress Women's Writing, as well as a contemporary novel, On Strike Against God, and one children's book, Kittatinny. She is best known for The Female Man, a novel combining utopian fiction and satire, and the story "When It Changed".

Marilyn Hacker is an American poet, translator and critic. She is Professor of English emerita at the City College of New York.

<i>Stars in My Pocket Like Grains of Sand</i> 1984 novel by Samuel R. Delany

Stars in My Pocket Like Grains of Sand (1984) is a science fiction novel by Samuel R. Delany. It is part of what would have been a "diptych", in Delany's description, of which the second half, The Splendor and Misery of Bodies, of Cities, remains unfinished.

<i>Hogg</i> (novel) Novel by Samuel R. Delany

Hogg is a novel by American author Samuel R. Delany, written in 1969 and completed in 1995. The novel deals graphically with themes of murder, child molestation, incest, coprophilia, coprophagia, urolagnia, anal-oral contact, necrophilia and rape. It was conceptualized and written in 1969, with a further draft completed in 1973, and it was finally published with some further, though relatively minor, rewrites in 1995 by Black Ice Books. Two later editions have featured some corrections, the last of which, published by Fiction Collective Two in 2004, carries a note from Delany stating that it is definitive.

<i>The Mad Man</i> 1994–2015 novel by Samuel R. Delany

The Mad Man is a literary novel by Samuel R. Delany, first published in 1994 by Richard Kasak. In a disclaimer that appears at the beginning of the book, Delany describes it as a "pornotopic fantasy". It was originally published in 1994, republished and slightly revised in 1996, and republished again with significant changes in 2002 and again in an e-book version with further corrections in 2015. Delany considers the 2015 version the definitive edition.

<i>The Motion of Light in Water</i> 1988 autobiography by Samuel R. Delaney

The Motion of Light in Water: Sex and Science Fiction Writing in the East Village, is the autobiography of the science fiction author Samuel R. Delany in which he recounts his experiences growing up as a gay African American man, as well as some of his time in an interracial and open marriage with Marilyn Hacker. It describes encounters with Albert Einstein, Bob Dylan, Stokely Carmichael and Stormé DeLarverie, a dinner with W. H. Auden, and a phone call to James Baldwin.

"Aye, and Gomorrah..." is a New Wave science fiction short story by American writer Samuel R. Delany. It is the first short story Delany sold, and won the 1967 Nebula Award for best short story. Before it appeared in Driftglass and Aye, and Gomorrah, and other stories, it first appeared as the final story in Harlan Ellison's seminal 1967 anthology, Dangerous Visions. It was controversial because of its sexual subject matter, and has been called "one of the best stories by a gay man published in the 1960s."

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Patrick Nielsen Hayden</span> American science fiction editor and writer

Patrick James Nielsen Hayden, is an American science fiction editor, fan, fanzine publisher, essayist, reviewer, anthologist, teacher and blogger. He is a World Fantasy Award and Hugo Award winner, and is an editor and the Manager of Science Fiction at Tor Books.

The New York Review of Science Fiction is a monthly literary magazine of science fiction that was established in 1988. It includes works of science fiction criticism, essays, and in-depth critical reviews of new works of fiction and scholarship. For the first 24 years, it was published by David G. Hartwell's Dragon Press, but with the start of volume 25, it has shifted to publisher Kevin J. Maroney's Burrowing Wombat Press.

Janeen Webb is an Australian writer, critic and editor, working mainly in the field of science fiction and fantasy.

<i>Equinox</i> (novel) 1973 novel by Samuel R. Delany

Equinox is a 1973 novel by American writer Samuel R. Delany. His first published foray into explicitly sexual material, it tells of a series of erotic and violent encounters in a small American seaport following the arrival of an African-American sea captain. It is a non-science fiction work, though with fantastic elements.

<i>Shorter Views</i>

Shorter Views is a 2000 collection of essays on race, sexuality, science fiction, and the art of writing by author, professor, and critic Samuel R. Delany.

An adult movie theater is a euphemistic term for a movie theater dedicated to the exhibition of pornographic films.

Science fiction studies is the common name for the academic discipline that studies and researches the history, culture, and works of science fiction and, more broadly, speculative fiction.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Black science fiction</span> Science fiction involving black people

Black science fiction or black speculative fiction is an umbrella term that covers a variety of activities within the science fiction, fantasy, and horror genres where people of the African diaspora take part or are depicted. Some of its defining characteristics include a critique of the social structures leading to black oppression paired with an investment in social change. Black science fiction is "fed by technology but not led by it." This means that black science fiction often explores with human engagement with technology instead of technology as an innate good.

<i>Nebula Winners Thirteen</i>

Nebula Winners Thirteen is an anthology of science fiction short works edited by Samuel R. Delany. It was first published in hardcover by Harper & Row in February 1980, with a paperback edition following from Bantam Books in August 1981.

Dark Matter is an anthology series of science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories and essays produced by people of African descent. The editor of the series is Sheree Thomas. The first book in the series, Dark Matter: A Century of Speculative Fiction from the African Diaspora (2000), won the 2001 World Fantasy Award for Best Anthology. The second book in the Dark Matter series, Dark Matter: Reading the Bones (2004), won the World Fantasy Award for Best Anthology in 2005. A forthcoming third book in the series is tentatively named Dark Matter: Africa Rising. This was finally published at the end of 2022 under the title Africa Risen: A New Era of Speculative Fiction, from Tor Books.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Samuel R. Delany</span> American author, critic, and academic (born 1942)

Samuel R. "Chip" Delany is an American writer and literary critic. His work includes fiction, memoir, criticism, and essays on science fiction, literature, sexuality, and society. His fiction includes Babel-17, The Einstein Intersection ; Hogg, Nova, Dhalgren, the Return to Nevèrÿon series, and Through the Valley of the Nest of Spiders. His nonfiction includes Times Square Red, Times Square Blue, About Writing, and eight books of essays. He has won four Nebula awards and two Hugo Awards, and he was inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame in 2002.

<i>Through the Valley of the Nest of Spiders</i> 2012 novel by Samuel R. Delany

Through the Valley of the Nest of Spiders is a novel by Samuel R. Delany.

Carl Howard Freedman is an American writer, literary theorist and professor of English literature at Louisiana State University. He is best known for the non-fiction book Critical Theory and Science Fiction, and his scholarly work on the writer Philip K. Dick. Freedman's other works include a series of books on Isaac Asimov, Ursula K. Le Guin and Samuel R. Delany, and several essays and a book on China Miéville. In 2018, he won the Pilgrim Award for lifetime contribution to science fiction and fantasy scholarship.


  1. "Review: Times Square Red, Times Square Blue." Publishers Weekly, 31 May 1999, p. 73.
  2. Seligman, Craig (August 10, 1999). "You meet the nicest folks in porn theaters". Salon.
  3. "Pathetic Literature". Grove Atlantic. Archived from the original on September 27, 2023. Retrieved September 27, 2023.

Further reading