Faggot Speaks: A Poetic Inquiry into the Experience of Antigay Mistreatment and Sexual Prejudice
Keywords:Gay, Homophobia, Sexual Prejudice, Poetic Inquiry, Autobiographical Poetry, Autoethnography
Research suggests that, compared to heterosexual counterparts, gay men and other sexual minorities are at higher risk of developing emotional distress and mental disorders. The sexual minority stress model attributes these health disparities to the chronic social stress that arises in response to exposure to antigay mistreatment and sexual prejudice pervasive in the culture. Little research has been done to illuminate the lived experience of exposure to prejudiced behaviors and attitudes and this inquiry aims to begin to fill this gap by addressing the following questions: What is the experience of being mistreated for being gay or perceived as gay? What is the experience of being exposed to sexual prejudice when one is gay? Using the writing of autobiographical poetry as a process of inquiry and the resulting poems as narrative data, I explore my own experiences with antigay encounters and sexual prejudice over the course of my life. The intent is to vivify and magnify the phenomenon under investigation via evocative poetic renderings aimed to foster empathy and embodied understanding in the reader.
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