Fred (Fritz) Klein (December 27, 1932 – May 24, 2006) was a bisexual American sex researcher, psychiatrist, inventor of the Klein Sexual Orientation Grid and author. He was also a pioneering bisexual rights activist, who was an important figure in the modern LGBT rights movement.
Life[edit | edit source]
Klein was born in Vienna, Austria, to orthodox Jewish parents. He and his family fled to New York when he was a child, to escape antisemitism.
Education[edit | edit source]
He received a BA from Yeshiva University in 1953, and an MBA from Columbia University in 1955. He studied medicine at University of Bern in Switzerland for six years, receiving his MD in 1961. He practiced as a psychiatrist in New York City in the 1970s.
As a self-identified bisexual, Klein was surprised at the lack of literature on his sexuality in the New York Public Library in 1974. He was inspired to place an advertisement in a New York City alternative newspaper the Village Voice and founded a ground-breaking social and support group for the Bisexual Community called Bisexual Forum.
Klein Sexual Orientation Grid[edit | edit source]
- Main article: Klein Sexual Orientation Grid
He devised the Klein Sexual Orientation Grid, a multi-dimensional system for describing complex sexual orientation, similar to the "zero-to-six" scale Kinsey scale used by Alfred Kinsey, but measuring seven different vectors of sexual orientation and identity (sexual attractions, sexual behavior, sexual fantasies, emotional preference, social preference, lifestyle and self-identification) separately, as they relate to a person's past, present and ideal future.
Writing[edit | edit source]
Klein published The Bisexual Option: A Concept of One Hundred Percent Intimacy in 1978, based on his research, the world's first real psychological study of bisexuality. He also co-authored Man, His Body, His Sex in 1978, and published Bisexualities: Theory and Research in 1986 and Bisexual and Gay Husbands: Their Stories, Their Words in 2001. He published a novel, Life, Sex and the Pursuit of Happiness in 2005.
Establishment of the AIB & the Journal of Bisexuality[edit | edit source]
Klein moved to San Diego in 1982. There he founded the American Institute of Bisexuality (AIB), also known as the Bisexual Foundation, in 1998 to encourage, support and assist research and education about bisexuality. Klein also founded the Journal of Bisexuality. He remained the Journal's principal editor until his death.
In 2006 Klein was diagnosed with cancer, and underwent surgery as a result. He died unexpectedly at home from cardiac arrest at age 73. He was survived by two brothers and his life partner, Mr. Tom Reise. He donated his body to science.
References[edit | edit source]
- Obituary, The Times, 16 June 2006
- Obituary, The Guardian, 19 June 2006
- Curriculum Vitae from bisexual.org
[edit | edit source]
- Noted bisexual leader Klein dies at 73, Washington Blade
- Obituary from the San Francisco Chronicle
- Obituary from TimesOnline
- AIB Mourns the Death of Founder, Dr. Fritz Klein
- 'Who's your Daddy!' by Sheela Lambert
- "A Brief History of the Bisexual Movement"
- The Klein Sexual Orientation Grid
- Sexual and Affectional Orientation and Identity Scales by Bobbi Keppel & Alan Hamilton for the Bisexual Resource Center