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Global Emergence Of Gay & Lesbian Pol

Andr Jan Willem; Krouwel Barry; Duyvendak Adam

Publication Year: 1999

Since the Stonewall rebellion in 1969, gay and lesbian movements have  grown from small outposts in a few major cities to a worldwide mobilization. This book brings together stories of the emergence and growth of movements in more than a dozen nations on five continents, with a comparative look that offers insights for both activists and those who study social movements.

Lesbian and gay groups have existed for  more than a century, often struggling against enormous odds. In the middle of the twentieth century, movement organizations were suppressed or swept away by fascism, Stalinism, and McCarthyism. Refounded by a few pioneers in the postwar period, movements have risen again as more and more people have stood up for their right to love and live with persons of their choice.

This book addresses both the mature movements of the European Union, North America, and Australia and the newer movements emerging in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and parts of Asia and Africa, examining the social and political conditions that shape movement opportunities and trajectories. It is rich in the details of gay and lesbian cultural and political life in different countries.

Published by: Temple University Press


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pp. v-vi

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1. Introduction

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pp. 1-11

GAY AND lesbian movements have a century-long history since the founding of the Scientific-Humanitarian Committee in a Berlin apartment in 1897. Early initiatives to advance the citizenship rights of gay and lesbian people dissolved in the Holocaust, however, and the authoritarian forms of moral and sexual regulation that swept both the communist world and the Western democracies in the mid-twentieth century almost...

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2. Moral Regulation and the Disintegrating Canadian State

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pp. 12-29

THE FIRST formal gay and lesbian movement organization in Canada emerged in 1964 in a historical context similar to that of gay and lesbian communities in the nations of Western Europe, the United States, Australia, and New Zealand. The post-World War II period in Canada was characterized by the legal prohibition of (male) homosexuality and a...

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3. Gay and Lesbian Movements in the United States: Dilemmas of Identity, Diversity, and Political Strategy

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pp. 30-90

FROM ITS modest and clandestine early forms in the 1950s, gay and lesbian activism has evolved into one of the most dynamic, controversial, and internally differentiated sets of social movements in the United States. My goal is to present an analytical history1 that shows how the general characteristics and tendencies, and the successes and failures, of these movements can be understood in terms of both external and internal...

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4. "More Love and More Desire": The Building of a Brazilian Movement

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pp. 91-109

THE YEAR 1978 was a magical time in Brazil. After more than a decade of harsh military rule, the generals' demise seemed imminent.1 Hundreds of thousands of metalworkers, silent for a decade, laid down their tools and struck against the government's regressive wage policies. Students filled the main streets of the states' capitals chanting, "Down...

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5. Democracy and Sexual Difference: The Lesbian and Gay Movement in Argentina

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pp. 110-132

IN THE afternoon of 27 August 1996, about twenty Argentinean lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered activists stormed into the Constituent Assembly (Convencion Estatuyente) of Buenos Aires. They carried blown-up photos of Carlos Jauregui, the country's most prominent and respected gay activist, who had died of AIDS one week earlier. Followed by members of the press and television crews, the activists tracked...

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6. The Lesbian and Gay Movement in Britain: Schisms, Solidarities, and Social Worlds

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pp. 133-157

A SHORT history of lesbian and gay life in Britain in the post-World War II period can be depicted as six sedimented layers. Each emerges anew but leaves its continuing traces. The foundation layer--the 1950s and the 1960s--included some press scandals and notorious spy and court cases involving homosexuals such as Guy Burgess, Donald...

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7. The Dutch Lesbian and Gay Movement: The Politics of Accommodation

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pp. 158-183

THE EVOLUTION of the Dutch homosexual emancipation movement is paradoxical. Since the early twentieth century, Christian Democrats have continuously controlled the executive branch of government, yet lesbians and gay men seem to enjoy substantial social freedom and legal protection. Moreover, Dutch society is often referred to as permissive...

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8. Gay and Lesbian Activism in France: Between Integration and Community-Oriented Movements

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pp. 184-213

OVER THE past decades we have witnessed the emergence of many identity-based movements in Western Europe and the United States. Having confronted the world with the slogan "Black is beautiful," the civil rights movement in the United States inspired oppressed groups all over the world to creep out of their shells. No longer asking for sympathy, these...

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9. Passion for Life: A History of the Lesbian and Gay Movement in Spain

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pp. 214-241

IN THE struggles of lesbian and gay movements, "speaking out" has a special relevance as the sole act that allows new social subjects to construct their own history, their own identity. It permits them to distance themselves gradually from the identity that has been created by the "other" through denial, pathologization and prohibition, and, more recently, assimilation...

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10. Gay and Lesbian Movements in Eastern Europe: Romania, Hungary, and the Czech Republic

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pp. 242-265

IN 1989, the words "gay and lesbian" were rarely heard in Eastern Europe. Seven years later--at the time of this writing--they (or the local equivalents) are used more often, but the term "Eastern Europe" is dying out. Its validity is denied by the prime minister of the Czech Republic, who reminds listeners acerbically that Prague is west of Vienna. An entire...

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11. Emerging Visibility of Gays and Lesbians in Southern Africa: Contrasting Contexts

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pp. 266-292

BEFORE 1995, southern Africa experienced gay and lesbian visibility only in South Africa. But the so-called book fair dramas in Zimbabwe in 1995 and 1996 (discussed later in this chapter) put the issue of homosexuality onto the agenda of the whole subcontinent, at least in the countries that share English as the official language.1 In Zimbabwe itself,...

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12. Japan: Finding Its Way?

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pp. 293-325

THE EARLY 1970s brought the first recorded attempts at lesbian and gay political organization in Japan, but the impact was limited. In the 1980s new organizations were founded, and by the 1990s their influence had become strong enough to make a major impact. From the early 1990s onward lesbian and gay groups and individuals gained much media attention...

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13. The Largest Street Party in the World: The Gay and Lesbian Movement in Australia

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pp. 326-343

GAY peer educator from the Queensland AIDS Council was explaining some of the background of the epidemic in Australia to a group of Filipino visitors. Asked why he thought the gay community had played such a prominent role in the Australian response, he replied: "I really don't know; we just seemed to come from nowhere." The development...

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14. Gay and Lesbian Movements beyond Borders? National Imprints of a Worldwide Movement

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pp. 344-371

WE BEGIN in this concluding chapter by summarizing the empirical results of this book, particularly taking into consideration those elements that all authors deal with in their country chapters. Since parallels in the development of gay and lesbian movements are striking, at least at first glance, we start by outlining similarities across countries. Closer...

About the Contributors

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pp. 373-375


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pp. 377-381

E-ISBN-13: 9781439901533

Publication Year: 1999