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Honk against homophobia : rethinking relations between media and sexual minorities

journal contribution
posted on 09.08.2013, 00:00 authored by Paul VenzoPaul Venzo, Kristy HessKristy Hess
The theory of “symbolic annihilation” or “symbolic violence” has been used in academic literature to describe the way in which sexual minorities have been ignored, trivialized, or condemned by the media. This article aims to de-center research from issues of media representation to consider the capacity for minority groups to proactively use new media and its various avenues for interactivity, social networking, and feedback to fight social exclusion. This work suggests that new media has become a space in which the nominally marginal in society may acquire “social artillery”—a term used to describe how sexual minorities utilize their expanding and more readily accessible social connections in digital space to combat instances of homophobia. The research draws on the results of an inquiry into the relation between media and a regional youth social justice group in Australia tackling homophobia. The research demonstrates that the group is becoming increasingly adept and comfortable with using a cross-section of media platforms to fulfill their own objectives, rather than seeing themselves as passive subjects of media representation. This article argues that this sets an example for other socially excluded groups looking to renegotiate their relation with the media in regional areas.

History

Journal

Journal of homosexuality

Volume

60

Issue

11

Pagination

1539 - 1556

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

Location

Abingdon, England

ISSN

0091-8369

eISSN

1540-3602

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2013, Taylor & Francis