Class Blog Posts Thoughts/Ideas/Responses

JT Leroy

In class Thursday we spoke a little bit about JT Leroy. JT Leroy is a persona that author Laura Albert created. Instead of just creating a fake name to publish on her books, Laura created a whole life for JT, one where JT is an HIV-positive boy who has had a tough life, experiencing drug abuse, sexual abuse and poverty. People were mad when it came out that JT is just a persona for Albert. If JT were just a name that Albert put on her books then it would not have been such a big deal when the truth came out. Though, because she created such a sad bio for JT, people felt sympathy towards a fictional character, and I agree with the people being mad. It is wrong to advantage of people’s sympathies, rather it is downright cruel. These people thought they were supporting a person who has experienced so many horrible things in his life on top of dying from an incurable illness. They were cheated and it is betrayal. Professor Proctor asked in class if we had a best friend who we’ve known for quite some time that turned out to be a Russian spy, would we feel betrayed? Well, definitely if they were a spy ha-ha. Though, just in general, if a friend turned out to be someone he/she is not and have been lying to you, then he or she betrayed your trust and friendship by lying. How can you go back to being friends with that person? People should just be honest with who they are because the truth will come out eventually no matter what.

-Andrew Dzwonczyk

One comment

  1. I also think the fact that Laura Albert had someone dress up as JT Leroy make the reveal feel so betraying. By having her sister-in-law portray him, it really created a sense of validity. I think it really made the difference that they were able to tie their feelings to an actual person and visual. If it was just a name and even an author photo, it could have been less painful. But because it was taken so far, people really did feel like they lost a friend, especially those who interacted closely with the pair and thought they could trust Leroy.

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