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Title:The lies we have been told: on (homo)sexuality in Africa
Author:Msibi, ThaboISNI
Periodical:Africa Today (ISSN 1527-1978)
Geographic term:Africa
gender discrimination
External link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/africa_today/v058/58.1.msibi.pdf
Abstract:In this paper, the author explores the waves of homophobia that seem to be sweeping the African continent. Tracing the rise of homophobia in specific African countries, including Malawi, Uganda, Nigeria and South Africa, he presents evidence that homophobia is not only publicly approved by African leaders, but relies on unsubstantiated claims of an imposed homosexual identity, contradictory ideas on morality, and the use of outdated laws. He argues that these claims represent a fašade that serves to entrench patriarchy and heteronormativity as legitimate and fixed in African societies. He further shows that the key difference between the West and Africa is not the presence or absence of same-sex desire, but its different social construction. Finally, the author argues for an intersectional approach, which recognizes the intersections between sexism and homophobia, and asserts that the situation calls for more focused organizing by Africans themselves in addressing the recent increase in expressions of homophobia. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]