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Goldsmiths - University of London

“‘I myself had a sweetie…’ – Re-thinking female same-sex intimacy beyond the institution of marriage and identity politics.”

Gunkel, Henriette. 2010. “‘I myself had a sweetie…’ – Re-thinking female same-sex intimacy beyond the institution of marriage and identity politics.”. Social Dynamics, 36(3), pp. 531-546. ISSN 0253-3952 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article is understood as an intervention into current debates around the question of rights in relation to sexuality and in particular to issues of same‐sex marriages and alternative family structures. As the interpretation of rights in relation to sexuality generally focuses on gay identities, this article reflects on the effects of these discourses on non‐normative modes of sexuality and intimacy. More specifically the article focuses on interviews conducted in Johannesburg on ‘mummy–baby’ relationships. By contextualising these relationships in the historical and cultural framework of sexual cultures and cultures of intimacy, this article argues that the South African history and cultures provided and provide a space which accommodates forms of female same‐sex intimacy that are not necessarily linked to metropolitan sexual cultures. The article discusses the tensions between non‐lesbian same‐sex intimacy and metropolitan lesbianism by focusing on homosociality as a gender theory. The article questions the regulatory functions of identity and problematises the practice of ‘coming out’ as always being a liberating moment.

Item Type: Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1080/02533952.2010.517625

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Visual Cultures

Dates:

DateEvent
2010Published

Item ID:

15910

Date Deposited:

20 Dec 2015 17:38

Last Modified:

07 Jul 2017 13:42

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI: http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/15910
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