Imperialist queerphobia : the curtailment of LGBTQ+ rights in Uganda and South Africa as a product of colonialism, religion, and patriarchy

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Sheppard, Phoebe Eleanor
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The concerning reality for LGBTQ+ people in sub-Saharan Africa is ever-increasing state-sanctioned queerphobia, societal oppression, heteropatriarchal violence, and religious queerphobia. This thesis incorporates the analysis of archival interviews, political speech, newspaper articles, letters, case law, photographs, and legislation to illuminate the fact that colonialism, religion and patriarchy have coalesced in contributing to increasingly queerphobic attitudes within sub-Saharan Africa, primarily driven by three core rationales: the contention that homosexuality is an ‘un-African’ phenomenon imported from the West which is morally corrupting Africa and must be eradicated to protect and preserve African culture; that homosexuality goes against Christianity – the dominant religion in South Africa and Uganda – and is therefore regarded as a ‘sin’ that must be punished and legislated against by African leaders placing their religious views at the forefront of legislative decision making; and that the existence of queer relationships and identities outside of the heteropatriarchal binary present a threat to masculinity which must be eradicated through heavily policing queer bodies and the enforcing of violence in the name of ‘enlightenment’. It is these three concepts that need to be negated in order for the full and equal rights of LGBTQ+ people to be enjoyed.
Second semester University: University of Galway. Awarded thesis 2021/2022
LGBTI rights, gender discrimination, gender identity, colonialism, patriarchy, Africa, Uganda, South Africa, religious aspects, homosexuality, violence