Home Institution

Trinity University

Publication Date

Spring 2014

Program Name

South Africa: Multiculturalism and Human Rights

Abstract

My ISP works to illuminate the racial segregation that is still present within Cape Town’s LGBT community, particularly during the celebration of gay and lesbian rights, known as the Pride festival that takes place annually in the end of February. I do this through discussing the privilege that comes with access to both information about Pride and the location of the events that take place. By looking at Pride as a parade for the white gay man to celebrate the rights he was granted twenty years ago, I work to openly discuss how a history of exclusion has lived on in Cape Town’s gay community and kept the black (inclusive of African, Coloured, Indian and Asian) gay and lesbian members of this city on the outskirts of celebration, ultimately establishing an “other” mentality towards this population. In order to grasp different racial opinions of Pride and its purpose within the gay community, I used academic research, participant observation in events throughout Pride week and a discussion on how to improve Pride’s equality in future celebrations, and informal interviews with four South Africans who identify as LGBT and participate in Pride. With my expansion of Pride on a former SIT student, Mollie Beebe’s, concept of the white dominance of the LGBT population of Cape Town, I conclude that Cape Town’s Pride festival is currently used primarily for the purpose of the white middleclass gay man’s celebration. This is affected by the economic segregation and lack of mobilization throughout the week of Pride. Because most, if not all, Pride events leading up to the parade and the parade itself is centrally located in Greenpoint and Sea Point, also known as the gay communities of Cape Town, it establishes a divide between the white upper and middle classes that have easy access to these areas and those of the 6 LGBT community that are located in townships and aren’t supported or even feel welcomed at such events. In addition, there exists a disjunction in Pride’s purpose among its participants, which continues to establish the division of Cape Town’s LGBT population.

Disciplines

African Studies | Family, Life Course, and Society | Gender and Sexuality | Inequality and Stratification | Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies | Race and Ethnicity | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies | Social and Cultural Anthropology

 

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