Equals before the Law? Public Religion and Queer Activism in the Age of Judicial Politics in South Africa

in Journal of Religion in Africa
Restricted Access
Get Access to Full Text
Rent on DeepDyve

Have an Access Token?



Enter your access token to activate and access content online.

Please login and go to your personal user account to enter your access token.



Help

Have Institutional Access?



Access content through your institution. Any other coaching guidance?



Connect

Abstract

On a global scale, the politics around the recognition of same-sex relationships has turned into legal controversies while opposition to it is often framed in religious terms. This article takes the case of Christian mobilization around the legal recognition of same-sex marriage in South Africa to investigate the intertwinement of religious and sexual rights struggles. Linking the anthropology of law, the sociolegal literature on judicialization, and studies of public religion, it argues that both same-sex activism and religious mobilization should be understood in terms of judicial politics. The article analyses religious responses to lesbian and gay judicial activism and presents a typology that reveals the structured diversity of these responses in terms of public discourse, political strategy, and legal argument. Two dimensions are key to conceptualizing these responses: religious communities’ ontological concepts of the world, including ideas about human agency and God, and their relationships to the world, construed in terms of political habitus.

Sections

References

AndersenEllen Ann Out of the Closets and into the Courts: Legal Opportunity Structures and Gay Rights Litigation 2005 Ann Arbor University of Michigan Press

BirukCrystal ‘Aid for Gays: The Material and the Moral in “African Homophobia” ’ 2012 Unpublished paper

BompaniBarbara ‘Mandela Mania: Mainline Christianity in Post-Apartheid South Africa’ Third World Quarterly 2006 27 6 1137 1149

BrandtstädterSusanneWadePeterWoodwardKath ‘Introduction: Rights, Cultures, Subjects and Citizens’ Economy and Society 2011 40 2 167 183

ButlerJudith ‘Sexual Politics, Torture and Secular Time’ British Journal of Sociology 2008 59 1 1 23

CasanovaJosé Public Religions in the Modern World 1994 Chicago, IL University of Chicago Press

ComaroffJeanComaroffJohn ComaroffJeanComaroffJohn ‘Law and Disorder in the Postcolony: An Introduction’ Law and Disorder in the Postcolony 2005 Chicago, IL University of Chicago Press 1 56

ComaroffJeanComaroffJohn ‘Reflections on Liberalism, Policulturalism, and ID-ology: Citizenship and Difference in South Africa’ Social Identities 9 2003 4 445 473

DonhamDonald L. ‘Freeing South Africa: The “Modernization” of Male-Male Sexuality in Soweto.’ Cultural Anthropology 1998 13 1 3 21

EngelkeMatthew ‘We Wondered what Human Rights He Was Talking About’: Human Rights, Homosexuality and the Zimbabwe International Book Fair’ Critique of Anthropology 1999 19 3 289 314

EpprechtMarc ‘Sexual Minorities, Human Rights, and Public Health Strategies in Africa’ African Affairs 2012 111 443 223 243

FoucaultMichel The History of Sexuality, Volume 1: An Introduction 1980 New York Random House

FrankDavid JohnMcEneaneyElizabeth H. ‘The Individualization of Society and the Liberalization of State Policies on Same-Sex Sexual Relations, 1984-1995’ Social Forces 1999 77 3 911 943

GarnerRobert C. ‘Religion as a Source of Social Chance in the New South Africa’ Journal of Religion in Africa 2000 30 3 310 343

GlendonMary Ann Rights Talk: The Impoverishment of Political Culture 1991 New York Simon & Schuster

HirschlRan Towards Juristocracy: The Origins and Consequences of the New Constitutionalism 2004 Boston, MA Harvard University Press

HunterMark Love in the Times of AIDS: Inequality, Gender and Rights in South Africa 2010 Bloomington Indiana University Press

KirschThomas G. KirschThomas G.TurnerBertram ‘Constitutionally Divine: Legal Hermeneutics in African Pentecostal Christianity’ Permutations of Order: Religion and Law as Contested Sovereignties 2009 Farnham Ashgate 165 184

KlugHeinz Constituting Democracy: Law, Globalism and South Africa’s Political Reconstruction 2000 Cambridge Cambridge University Press

MassadJoseph A. ‘Re-Orienting Desire: The Gay International and the Arab World’ Public Culture 2002 14 2 361 385

MeyerBirgit ‘Christianity in Africa: From African Independent to Pentecostal-Charismatic Christianity’ Annual Review of Anthropology 2004 33 447 474

MsibiThabo ‘The Lies We Have Been Told: On (Homo)Sexuality in Africa’ Africa Today 2011 58 1 55 77

OomenBarbara Chiefs in South Africa: Law, Power and Culture in the Post-Apartheid Era 2005 London James Currey

PoselDeborah ‘Sex, Death and the Fate of the Nation: Reflections on the Politicization of Sexuality in Post-Apartheid South Africa’ Africa 2005a 75 2 125 153

PoselDeborah ‘The Scandal of Manhood: “Baby Rape” and the Politicization of Sexual Violence in Post-apartheid South Africa’ Culture, Health & Sexuality 2005b 7 3 239 252

PillayUdeshRuleStevenRobertsBenjamin South African Social Attitudes: Changing Times, Diverse Voices 2007 Pretoria HSRC

PuarJasbir Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times 2007 Durham, NC Duke University Press

ReddyVasu SteynMelissavan ZylMikky ‘Queer Marriage: Sexualising Citizenship and the Development of Freedoms in South Africa’ The Prize and the Price: Shaping Sexualities in South Africa 2009 Pretoria HSRC Press 341 363

ReidGraeme ‘The Canary of the Constitution: Same-sex Equality in the Public Sphere’ Social Dynamics 2010a 36 1 38 51

ReidGrame DilgerHansjörgLuigUte ‘Gossip, Rumor and Scandal: The Circulation of AIDS Narratives in a Climate of Silence and Secrecy’ Morality, Hope and Grief: Anthropologies of AIDS in Africa 2010b New York and Oxford Berghahn Books 192 215

RobinsSteven ‘Sexual Politics and the Zuma Rape Trial’ Journal of Southern African Studies 2008 34 2 411 427

SadgroveJoanneVanderbeckR.M.AnderssonG.V.WardK. ‘Morality Plays and Money Matters: Towards a Situated Understanding of the Politics of Homosexuality in Uganda’ Journal of Modern African Studies 2012 50 1 103 129

VorhölterJulia ‘Negotiating Social Change: Ugandan Discourses on Westernisation and Neocolonialism as Forms of Social Critique’ Journal of Modern African Studies 2012 50 2 283 307

WeberMax Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft: Grundriß einer verstehenden Soziologie 1972 Tübingen Mohr

Figures

  • Ontology and Relationships to the World: Forms of Public Religion
    View in gallery

Information

Content Metrics

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 19 19 1
Full Text Views 0 0 0
PDF Downloads 0 0 0
EPUB Downloads 0 0 0