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School of Applied Social Sciences

SASS Staff

Publication details for Dr Mark McCormack

McCormack, M. (2011). Mapping the terrain of homosexually-themed language. Journal of Homosexuality 58(5): 664-679.

Author(s) from Durham


In this article, I present a new model for understanding homosexually-themed language. By detailing how old conceptualizations of homophobic language no longer maintain heuristic utility in explaining the social dynamics of many sport and educational settings, I situate other conceptualizations of homosexually-themed language depending on the cultural context. I argue that whether language is considered homophobic, or whether it is better conceptualized as fag discourse, gay discourse or pro-gay language, is primarily dependent on the homohysteria of a setting. This model should enable scholars and educators to understand the operation of homosexually-themed language in society and properly evaluate the homophobia of a setting.