This book provides an original insight into how families of origin of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) people are involved in negotiating meanings and experiences of sexuality and intimacy, an underexplored dimension of queer family life. Delving into the perspectives of families of origin and showing the complexity and heterogeneity of the ways people with their different gender and sexual identities "do" families across generations, it contributes to querying the very distinction between families of origin and families of choice, and questions the (hetero)normative assumptions about forms and boundaries of family this distinction rests upon. A focus on marginal contexts, such as Southern Europe, and on marginal subjects, like bisexuals or black lesbians, is proposed as a way to challenge the universality of privileged narratives within heteronormativity, homonormativity and anglocentrism, and to reveal unexpected resources families of origin mobilise to make sense of GLBT identities and lived experiences.
The book poses a crucial question: how can alliances along family ties develop on the basis of shared stories of family diversity and marginalised identities, rather than of loving (and normative) support to GLBT people in need and an advocacy in their name from a position of heterosexual privilege? This book was originally published in Journal of GLBT Family Studies.
Chiara Bertone, Ph.D., Sociologist, is Assistant Professor at the University of East Piedmont, Italy. Her main interests lie in sexuality and family change. She is author of Le omosessualita (Rome 2009) and has recently co-edited the special issue The politics of sexuality in contemporary Italy for Modern Italy. Maria Pallotta-Chiarolli, Ph.D, is Senior Lecturer in the School of Health and Social Development, Deakin University, Australia and author of ten books. Her research is concerned with social diversity (genders, cultures, families and sexualities), and she is a founding committee member of AGMC Inc. (Australian GLBTIQ Multicultural Council).
1. Putting Families of Origin into the Queer Picture: Introducing This Special Issue 2. The Transparent and Family Closets: Gay Men and Lesbians and Their Families of Origin 3. Becoming the Parent of a GLB Son or Daughter 4. Suffering As the Path to Acceptance: Parents of Gay and Lesbian Young People Negotiating Catholicism in Italy 5. "We Are with Family": Black Lesbian Couples Negotiate Rituals with Extended Families 6. Bisexuality and Family: Narratives of Silence, Solace, and Strength 7. "It's Always the Mother's Fault": Secondary Stigma of Mothering a Transgender Child 8. The Influence of Psychiatric and Legal Discourses on Parents of Gender-Nonconforming Children and Trans Youths in Spain 9. Familiarising the Gay, Queering the Family: Coming Out and Resilience in Mambo italiano 10. Queer TV Moments and Family Viewing in Italy 11. Sexual Citizenship in Private and Public Space: Parents of Gay Men and Lesbians Discuss Their Experiences of Pride Parades 12. Mars to Venus or Earth to Earth? How Do Families of Origin Fit into GLBTQ Lives?
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