The “Gay” and Psychopathology: Interrogating the Sexual Theories of Homophobes

Keywords: homophobia, identification, sexual theories, coloniality, decoloniality


This article seeks to explain and interrogate the sexual theories of homophobes observable on the African continent. I begin by exploring a possible explanation for the emergence and maintenance of certain homophobic sexual theories; Donald Moss’s arguments regarding the identification or disidentification economy will serve as a possible theoretical starting point. I then investigate three possible sexual theories of homophobes when mentally preoccupied with “the gay man.” Finally, I return to economies of identification as both a colonial perpetuation (in the form of adopting homophobic sexual theories) and as decolonial opportunity (in the form of conflictual identifications). I argue that homophobia and the constituent sexual theories could ideally be dissolved (among other settings) in educational spaces. In these educational spaces, I argue, the homophobe could be identifying with the “non-homophobic” pedagogue, which could bring about the dissolution of homophobia if the identification with the educator is strong enough.


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Author Biography

David Barnard, University of Pretoria

Assistant lecturer

MA candidate

Department of Philosophy

University of Pretoria