Gay shame in a geopolitical context

Munt, Sally R (2018) Gay shame in a geopolitical context. Cultural Studies. ISSN 0950-2386

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With the developing acceptance of gay equality in the west,, it is assumed that we live in a post-shame era, with ‘the world we have won’. However, this is a chimeric cliché of neoliberalism (rather like the idea that we are all postfeminist now). The ‘proud’ homosexual of the west is discursively constructed against the ‘shamed’ homosexual of the east, a typecasting resonant with postcolonial clichés of the primal, religious and homophobic savagery of the global south in contrast with the civilising, liberal evolution of the secular global north. Shame displacement is of course a dynamic of shame itself. The perceived failure in achieving the ‘proud iconic gay’ of media cultures in the global North results in a double bind of being ashamed of being ashamed. This article will reconsider the cultural politics and temporality of shame for primarily white gay identities after the ‘War on Terror’. As Islamophobia has exponentially increased, some western gays translocate their unacknowledged shame onto a misconceived ‘brown threat’ in a complex, aggressive, and racist shame loop (Lewis 1971, Scheff & Retzinger 1991).

Item Type: Article
Keywords: unacknowledged shame; shame and temporality; shame and aggression; white supremacism; gay racism
Schools and Departments: School of Media, Film and Music > Media and Film
Research Centres and Groups: Sussex Centre for Cultural Studies
Depositing User: Sally Munt
Date Deposited: 19 Apr 2018 15:49
Last Modified: 23 Apr 2018 11:02

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