virtual communities, social networks and resistant fragments:young sicilian gays’ identity counter-attack

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Abstract

Society is made of communications and representations: the core of its dynamics is culture and its patterns. Human beings are the authors of this significant web, i.e. culture; they are the authors and the victims at the same time. Social exclusions as norms and values — an ice–cream as a porn movie — are embedded in this culture web, as the anthropologist Clifford Geertz would say; and culture is the nature, the most appropriate environment of human interactions. A human being, her feelings, thoughts, dogma, creations, his/her own physical expression become a matter of culture, representations and perceptions. She creates paradise and hell, she is her own angel, her own devil. Sexual morality, and in particular the heterosexual form, is a product of these significant interactions: the body, according to some approaches and theories, has become the site of control and resistance to these heterosexual and hetero-normative social constructions. Control of sexual expressions can be explained from different perspectives: some put the stress on the changing configurations of capitalism, others on the transformation of bourgeois family, yet others base their research on the role played by religion and ethical issues. In our opinion, all of these approaches have something in common: the representation of the evil, of the deviant, of the ‘other’, its labelling and its annihilation. Take the case of homosexuality: people have an interest in not demeaning it: they say it’s a sin or a perversion, and design story-telling, jokes, ideologies, or simply grotesque teenager movies around this idea (the process of representation); following this definition they will label and stigmatise groups of people, whose attitudes, behaviour and feelings will become the sign of evil (labelling process); they will try to defend themselves from the infection and will find out strategies that they call deportation (lots of homosexuals were deported by Nazi regime), or simply erase the evidence (process of annihilation).
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages0
JournalSOMA internationale zeitschrift für popkultur, politik, das leben und den ganzen rest
Volume12
Publication statusPublished - 2002

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