The Mad Man

by Samuel R. Delany
Release date: 1994
Type: other fiction
Genres: mainstream

The Mad Man was originally published in 1994. It was republished and slightly revised in 1996 and republished again with significant changes in 2002. Samuel R. Delany considers the 2002 version the definitive edition.

For his thesis, graduate student John Marr researches the life and work of the brilliant Timothy Hasler – a philosopher whose career was cut tragically short over a decade earlier. Marr encounters numerous obstacles as other researchers turn up evidence of Hasler's personal life that is deemed simply too unpleasant and disillusioning for the rarified air of academe.

On another front, Marr finds himself increasingly drawn toward more shocking, depraved sexual entanglements with the homeless men of his neighborhood, until it begins to seem that Hasler's death might hold some key to his own life as a gay man in the age of AIDS. As John Marr learns more about the enigma that was Timothy Hasler, his own increasing sexual debasement leads him to a point where his and the philosopher's lives collide violently...

(updated 2017-01-27)

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