Authors

Douglas NeJaime

Document Type

Article

Abstract

Varying political affiliations and theoretical leanings exist in the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) community, hardly surprising in a population that encompasses middle-class white gay men and butch leather dykes alike. Yet many GLBT organizations purport to speak on behalf of all of their very different constituents. How successfully gaybased organizations reconcile these competing interests has become a concern for academics and activists, many of whom fear the increasing homogenization of the gay movement and the resulting marginalization of dissenting viewpoints. The growing clamor over same-sex marriage provides an illustration of this trend. While major GLBT organizations litigate for the "right to marry," apparently at the behest of those they seek to represent, scholars like Michael Warner worry that marriage rights for same-sex couples would only serve to strengthen the normalizing power of marriage and, while bringing the Good (married) Gay into the heteronormative fold, to consolidate the Bad (unmarried) Queer's position in the margins. Under Warner's conception of the current gay rights movement, the pursuit of marriage necessarily comes at the expense of articulating alternative, queer goals. Although some scholars frame the debate in such absolute terms, an exploration of the actual work being done on the ground shows that samesex marriage occupies a more complex and tenuous position in gay-based advocacy.

Date of Authorship for this Version

2003

Included in

Law Commons

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