Re: Homophobia-- human universal?

Mary Beth Williams (
20 Aug 1996 10:18:20 GMT

In <4va6t2$> Susan <> writes:
> (Bryant) wrote:
>>In article <4uvqj3$>, Susan
<> wrote:
>>[Bryant asked for refs on homophobia in other cultures]
>>[Bryant feels compelled to assert his heterosexuality, but hesitates
>>because he recently mentioned a study showing that homophobes are
>>often closet homosexuals :)]
>Ah, the eternal tension-- I am reminded of the Seinfeld episode where
>Jerry was "outed", and the constant reiterations of "not that there's
>anything wrong with that!"

{chuckle} I had the exact same thought ;-)

[Deleting many good refs from Susan]

I would also look at some of the more recent *gender* based literature,
as meetings such as the Gender (Boone) conferences look not only at
*first* (male) and *second* (female) engenderment, but *third*
(bisexual/homosexual) and *forth* (asexual) engenderment as well. When
I attended the last Boone conference, I recall at least a half-dozen
papers on third/forth genders, including an excellent one by Ryan
Wheeler (Florida). A collection of papers from the conference is due
out any day now, and I suspect that at least a few of the *two hearts*
papers will be included. The next *Boone* gender conference is
scheduled for Sept. in Michigan (its now rotating rather than staying
in Boone, S.C.) and will probably have a number of interesting papers
on the subject as well.

I would also check out the on-line gender bibliography on the UKentucky
(I think) web site. If I recall correctly, there are a number of
references to papers and publications on third/forth gender topics.

>I generally use Native American when referring to the first
>inhabitants of this continent, particularly in more "formal" contexts
>(as opposed to conversation-- I know some Native Americans who do not
>object to the term "Indian", but I usually wait for some indication of
>what people want to be called before I plunge ahead-- as someone who
>thinks the term "man" is anything but inclusive, I am a big fan of
>people being called what they want to be called, not what I think they
>should be called).

Very, very well put, Susan, and I certainly do appreciate the thought
(btw, either Indian or Native American is fine with me...Wabanaki, of
course, would really make me gleeful...)


MB Williams
Dept. of Anthro., UMass-Amherst