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Hispanic (LGT) Masculinities in Transition


Edited By Rafael M. Mérida-Jiménez

The objective of Hispanic (LGT) Masculinities in Transition is to investigate the cultural representations/intersections of masculinity and sexual minorities (lesbians, gays, and transgenders) in Spain between the passing of the Law of Social Dangerousness and Social Rehabilitation (1970) and the reform of the Penal Code in 1995. In order to meet this aim, this volume analyzes the artistic production of a number of Spanish and Latin American male and female individuals who, first, were able to question the structures of control and domination in Spain in the last years of Franco’s dictatorship; second, were able to open up new horizons of freedom in the context of the criminalization of the previous decades; and, third, were able to bring about new models of masculinity that were more egalitarian during the first years of the new democracy.
More specifically, Hispanic (LGT) Masculinities in Transition will interlink the fields of political and historical change and artistic production in order to assess whether cultural representations can be understood as mere reflections of social and political change. In terms of the materials being examined, these are, in the first instance, literary, although other narratives are also addressed (filmic production and plastic arts). This volume is essential reading for professors and students of contemporary Spanish history and culture, as well as for those interested in lesbian, gay, transgender, and masculinity issues.
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1—Sexual Movements Without Sex? Sex-Talk in the Spanish Gay Liberation Movement


The fight for the rights of sexual minorities in Spain was initiated by a generation of activists that campaigned for “liberation.”1 We might call them “gay” liberationists, although politically this generation often talked about themselves as “homosexuals.” Most of them were men, as lesbians in Spain mostly marched within the women’s movement until the late 1980s. Homosexual/gay liberationists worked in so-called “liberation fronts;” they felt the most at home when engaging with discourses that connected their cause with revolutionary ideas about social change, cultural transformation and personal redefinition. These pioneering activists explicitly aligned with a generation of protesters in France, the United Kingdom or the United States, acclaimed for having successfully challenged the regulatory frameworks of sexual behavior that were so fiercely established in post-war western Europe and the United States.

Gay liberation, however, was not the same everywhere. A review of several historical experiences reveals that gay liberation during late 1960s and early 1970s indeed took one of two forms (Marotta). In some cases, the emphasis rested with the personal and cultural dimension of sexual liberation; in others, the economic and political aspects took the lead. I call the former “radical” and the latter “revolutionary” liberation. The revolutionary model was more popular in France and Spain, while radical liberation defined better the ideas and claims of “gay liberation fronts” in Great Britain or the United States.2

Subtle, but important, differences in the attribution of blame and, also, in the definition of strategies distinguished both...

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