9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN23 Sexuality

2009-09-05 13:30:00 2009-09-05 15:00:00 Saturday, 5 September 13:30 - 15:00 Sexualities and Methods Across the Disciplines Building I, 1E8

Queerying Homophobic Bullying: Memories, Identities and Strategies

Homophobic bullying has attracted much attention in recent years. A high profile issue for LGBT and children's rights campaigners it has also been the subject of extensive academic research, policy initiatives and case law.
This paper explores this literature to question how memory and identities are utilised in startegies designed tackled to homophobic bullying.
In particular it identifies and critiques the centrality of two dominant images of victimhood within the literature: the 'brutalised innocent child' and the 'tragic homosexual'.
It also questions the use of memory in the empirical research based on interviews with adult gays and lesbians looking back to their childhoods and examines how these construct a collective past.
The aim of the paper is not to reject endeavors to tackle homophobic bullying but to question the conditions of possibility that enable it become a legitimate speakable harm.