‘One can hardly call them homophobic’: Denials of antigay prejudice within the same-sex marriage debate

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

The UK’s Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act (2013) was framed by the Government as an equality measure and, as such, those who opposed the legislation were likely to be sensitive to possible accusations of prejudice. This paper examines opposition to marriage equality within the British press and explores how denials of homophobia were made. Opponents to same-sex marriage attended to common sense notions of ‘homophobes’, either by aligning their views with categories of persons not typically considered homophobic or by distancing their views from a homophobic other. Opponents also offered a counter accusation that it was liberal supporters of same-sex marriage who were intolerant. Parallels are drawn with discursive literature on racist discourse and it appears that despite social scientists’ attempts to expand the concept of antigay prejudice, homophobia is commonly referred to in terms of irrational bigoted individuals.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-295
JournalDiscourse & Society
Volume28
Issue number3
Early online date30 Jan 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2017

Fingerprint

prejudice
marriage
equality
social scientist
opposition
legislation
act
human being
Denial
Prejudice
Same-sex Marriage
discourse
Opponents
Equality
Homophobia
Accusations
homophobia
Supporters
Discursive
Distancing

Keywords

  • Homophobia
  • heterosexism
  • same-sex marriage
  • discourse
  • rhetoric

Cite this

‘One can hardly call them homophobic’: Denials of antigay prejudice within the same-sex marriage debate. / Jowett, Adam.

In: Discourse & Society, Vol. 28, No. 3, 01.05.2017, p. 281-295.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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