The White Paper
by Philip Iosca
The White Paper is an account of the tragedy of homosexual love in a society that views it as taboo. First published in 1928, it has since been printed in various editions that range from pulp paperbacks to hand-colored artist books. The text is, with few notable exceptions, accompanied with illustrations by Jean Cocteau. Although Cocteau is widely recognized as the author, publicly he never fully acknowledged the text as his own. This edition of The White Paper, conceived of and re-illustrated by Philip Iosca, is rendered on the page as a glittering veil of gloss varnish and white ink. It is an enigmatic reflection of tragic beauty– a kind of love that is still, 85 years later, struggling for acceptance and, ultimately, respect. As the anonymous protagonist laments, "I'm not willing to just be tolerated."