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Origins, Emotions, and Efficacies: Straight Allies and the Cultural Politics of LGBT Activism

Description

This qualitative research project investigates the contemporary landscape of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) politics and activism, specifically the concept and identities of so-called "straight allies." Through 13 in-depth interviews with individuals who identify as straight allies, we explore

This qualitative research project investigates the contemporary landscape of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) politics and activism, specifically the concept and identities of so-called "straight allies." Through 13 in-depth interviews with individuals who identify as straight allies, we explore the ways in which these heterosexuals engage in LGBT politics and activist culture. We take a grounded theory approach to data analysis, through which the concept of "passive" and "active" activism emerges as a potent framework to understand these allies' meaning making practices, as well as how they negotiate the emotional, interpersonal, and mass-mediated complexities of being straight in LGBT communities and politics. Thompson's (2005) theory of "ontological choreography" is used as an interpretive lens to make sense of the heterogeneous knowledges and experiences our participants draw upon to constitute their straight ally identities. Implications for future research on LGBT politics and straight alliance are discussed.

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Date Created
2014-05