Gay and Lesbian Youth Experiences of Homophobia in South African Secondary Education

Author: Allister H. Butler, et al.
Created: 2003
Country South Africa
Type Journal Article
Format pdf
Extent 48 pages
Original Publication
Publication Journal of Gay and Lesbian Issues in Education
In post-apartheid South Africa, the tenets of inclusivity, non-discrimination and tolerance are actively encouraged and legislated across all sectors of society, including education. However, in examining the coming out experiences of eighteen South African gay and lesbian youth, it became apparent that they had all experienced discrimination, isolation and non-tolerance within their high school contexts. This paper provides insights into the homophobic incidents and experiences as articulated by this sample of sexual-minority youth. Responses from participants resulted in the identification of various themes relating to homophobia in the school environment: peer harassment, harassment inflicted by teachers and school administrators, ineffective school counsellors; avoidance, rejection and isolation; and a lack of information and curriculum in high schools for gay and lesbian youth.
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