Saturday, August 18, 2007

I've decided on my blog topic!!

Hello everyone,
I have finally decided on my topic for my first blog. I previously stated I was going to do the question on stereotypes “Choose and describe a stereotype that is commonly held about a minority group in Australian society. Discuss why this stereotype exists, how that stereotype was formed, and how it is maintained. Also consider how this stereotype could be changed. Present a concept map depicting your understanding of the socio-psychological variables involved.”
Now I have decided that I am going to write about homosexuals as a minority group in Australia. Although it has been time consuming trying to find Australian journals, I am slowly gathering some great information! I’m thinking my essay will outline how Australians perceive the stereotypical homosexual, then explore why this stereotype exists. I’m probably going to discuss things like gender roles, cultural norms being violated, how people are frightened of the unknown and different… Then I will look at how this stereotype was formed focusing on religion, biology, laws and fear. I have found a lot of interesting studies about how the media can contribute to the maintenance of homosexual stereotypes. I will finally outline some possible ways to change the stereotypes associated with homosexuality, things like education.
Just a starting point… any ideas on things I should look at researching more, or things I shouldn’t discuss would be greatly appreciated. And does anyone know if the concept map for this question should focus on how stereotypes exist, how they were formed, how they are maintained or how they can be changed or all of these factors???


beck1411 said...

Hey Claire,

I think that this is a really good topic for the blog and i think that this particular stereotype is one that is widespread within our community. The issues that those in the homosexual community have to face are unbelievale and the negative stigma that is associated is so unjust. I think that focusing on education is a good idea, I have said in some of my comments that a lot of prejudice and stereotypes stem from a lack of understanding and i think that maybe this is the case here aswell. The media as always have placed their own spin on the depiction of gay people and the way in which the term 'gay' is used in such a derogitory manner is something we should all be ashamed of.
Good luck with your reseach!

James Neill said...

Hi Clare,

One of the curiosities about attitudes and prejudice towards homosexuality I think is the intersection with gender e.g., from the perspective of straight and homosexual males and females towards straight and homosexual males and females. In particular, why is male homosexuality perceived more negatively than female homosexuality.

I also think the debate/issue is simplistic and steroetypically focused on hetero/homo rather than a continuum (e.g, we all have various levels of hetero/homo tendencies) and we also seem to less often focus on bisexuality and transexuality - perhaps because they suggest a continuum, which we would rather reject bec. of cognitive dissonance. This relates to work on sex roles (might be worth checking out) and discussing masculinity and femininity (which happens less) than discussing physiological gender.

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