The Progressive League and the quest for sexual reform in British politics, 1932–59
, marriage reform, the legalisation
of homosexuality and reform of the obscenity laws.
Lesley Hoggart has argued that ‘visions of sexual liberation’ may have
seemed remote during the rise of fascism in the 1930s.12 Undoubtedly,
fascism dominated most political agendas, including within the FPSI – an
organisation founded at a time of factionalism in the labour movement
following the Labour Party’s catastrophic 1931 defeat.13 In the ‘greatest
landslide of British democratic history’, Labour was reduced to fifty-two
seats and only septuagenarian George Lansbury from the old
). This hope is fulfilled in the final sequence of the film, which shows the
gay brother’s impact on Slimane’s “path.” Touching on a still-taboo topic in
post-beur cinema, Djaïdani’s film pioneers a reflection on homosexuality, a
repressed aspect of human experience in Maghrebi-French Muslim culture,
and provides visibility to gay Arabs in France.23
Djaïdani’s criticism of racist and heteronormative discourse falls within
the heated debate about the legalization of homosexual marriage in France.
The same month when Rengaine came out, a powerful homophobic movement
Newspapers, magazines and pamphlets have always been central, almost sacred, forms of communication within Irish republican political culture. While social media is becoming the primary ideological battleground in many democracies, Irish republicanism steadfastly expresses itself in the traditional forms of activist journalism. Shinners, Dissos and Dissenters is a long-term analysis of the development of Irish republican activist media since 1998 and the tumultuous years following the end of the Troubles. It is the first in-depth analysis of the newspapers, magazines and online spaces in which the differing strands of Irish republicanism developed and were articulated during a period where schism and dissent defined a return to violence. Based on an analysis of Irish republican media outlets as well as interviews with the key activists that produced them, this book provides a compelling long-term snapshot of a political ideology in transition. It reveals how Irish Republicanism was moulded by the twin forces of the Northern Ireland Peace Process and the violent internal ideological schism that threatened a return to the ‘bad old days’ of the Troubles. This book is vital for those studying Irish politics and those interestedin activism as it provides new insights into the role that modern activist media forms have played in the ideological development of a 200-year-old political tradition.
between homosexuals who are obliged to use condoms and
heterosexuals who are encouraged to do so.
During the late 1980s and early 1990s a number of small-scale
surveys were funded to measure heterosexual AIDS transmission.
Sex researchers who had previously ignored the incidence of HIV
amongst gay men were now interested in whether AIDS was a
danger to all North Americans, including heterosexual men. Even
though little evidence supported the assumption that heterosexuals, especially heterosexual teens in the US, were at risk of HIV, in
The challenge of Dónal Óg Cusack’s ‘coming out’ to heteronormativity in contemporary Irish culture and society
Debbie Ging and Marcus Free
( 2001 ), in the Observer ,
[t]he Gaelic Athletic Association has made no public comment on the posters, but a senior member of the body’s ruling board told The Observer that members were ‘seething’. ‘The GAA is sacred in Irish life and this ploy to sell a few more magazines is cheap and distasteful. It will backfire’, he said.
Both the poster itself and conservative public reaction to it served to highlight some kind of unspoken but founding principle of Irish cultural life, namely that homosexuality and the GAA could never coexist.
, the year John Harris
was twenty, Lord Devlin published his book The Enforcement of Morals,
in which he argued for the role of moral nose in both morality and lawmaking.10 He said, ‘I do not think one can ignore disgust if it is deeply felt
and not manufactured. Its presence is a good indication that the bounds of
toleration are being reached. Not everything is to be tolerated. No society
can do without intolerance, indignation and disgust; they are the forces
behind the moral law.’11
As an example, he took homosexuality. He was liberal enough to support
compared or placed on a continuum of severity, and wrongs committed
elsewhere can be righted in the UK. Asylum narratives articulate time and
space into a world of the sexually modern or backward, erasing histories of
attitudes towards homosexuality both in the UK and in the countries of origin
and thus obfuscating the localised complexity of homophobia. In other words,
asylum is a site for the production of a homogeneous history of homophobia: it
is a process that simultaneously ontologises the social problem of homophobia
and places LGBT refugees as the human means for
present history of British sex education and argues for a ‘need
to construct modes of history-writing which grasp that
past/present relation’ (2000: 165, my emphasis). In Mort’s
account public reactions to AIDS connect with early nineteenthcentury beliefs about health and disease as they concern ideas of
moral and immoral sex and dangerous sexualities. Using the
example of a newspaper article from 1983 which associates San
Francisco’s homosexual community with AIDS, Mort argues that
such accounts are ‘framed by moral condemnation, reaffirming
the distance between our
considers the materiality of the body in the act of sex as ‘the most
troubling of all social encounters’ because ‘it so easily threatens
rather than confirms gender polarity’. For Segal (1997: 86) during
sex ‘the great dichotomies (activity/passivity, subject/object,
heterosexual/homosexual) slide away’. Perhaps not surprisingly
Segal’s understanding of (hetero)sex as threatening rather than
confirming gender polarity centres on the penis’s performance, a
performance which she argues undermines the rule of the phallus
in straight male pornography, and the
, practice, and politics that would make sex better, or make better sex’ (1993: 113).
These transformations included a deprivileging of ‘heterosexism
over homosexuality and lesbian experience, phallocentricty over
gynocentricity, reproductive over non-reproductive sex’ (1993:
115). But with the rise of the sexual epidemic of AIDS ‘an ecstatic carnival is progressively being displaced by a more sober and
reserved aesthetic of “sexual prudence and body management”.
The language of “better sex” is being replaced by that of “safe
sex” and the promotion of a “new sobriety