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ERIC Number: EJ841223
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 2
ISSN: ISSN-1541-0889
Researching LGB Youths in India: Still a Distant Dream
Parekh, Suresh
Journal of Gay & Lesbian Issues in Education, v3 n2-3 p147-150 2006
Unfortunately, as far as the research on lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) individuals in India is concerned, the situation is almost the same as it was in the 1980s. Why have Indian psychologists and psychiatrists avoided researching LGB youth? And, more importantly, why does this silence continue? The first and the foremost reasons are the stigma and the negative attitudes of the larger section of the socially and religiously restrictive Hindu society towards homosexuality and homosexual behaviors. Throughout the known history of Hindu civilization, homosexuality and other associated variations have existed as the patterns of the sexual behaviors for the gratification of sexual needs. Though highly covert and closeted, homosexual behaviors exist within all socioeconomic classes and in the full range of occupations in both rural areas and urban centers of today's India. But, in the very restricted and non-liberated social, ethical, and religious environment of this country, homosexual relations are considered, by the society as a whole, anti-natural, inhuman, grotesque, and unlawful. This prejudice and the resultant homophobia have been one of the principal factors preventing Indian psychologists and psychiatrists to undertake research with LGB individuals. The negative attitudes, rampant homophobia, and the criminal statute create a practical problem in conducting research about LGB youth: how to find and where to locate the participants for this research? Under the possible fear of being exposed and discovered and the subsequent adverse perception of and reaction/punishment to their behaviors, most LGB youth consciously cultivate invisibility and most Indian psychologists and psychiatrists simply do not know who these individuals are and where to find them. Given the difficulty of even securing information about an organization, let alone gaining access to LGB youth, the author contends that researching these youth in India is still a distant dream. But, if it becomes a reality, what would be the priorities for researching LGB youth: discovering the means of empowering LGB youth to come out; studying the adverse psychological consequences on the personality and mental health LGB youth in hiding their true sexuality.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: India