International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

No place for Gays: Colonialism and the African Homosexual in African Literature
Wazha Lopang

This paper argues that African writers who set out to give the literary world an African perspective of the Indigenous people during colonialism did so by giving a convenient image of the African’s sexuality. This image stems out of the fact that the African’s sexuality was one in which same-sex relationships were portrayed as cultural imports of colonialism and not practices that were inherently part of the African. The paper shows how some influential West African writers either depicted homosexuality as evil or ignored it altogether despite the reality that was happening in the African continent. Furthermore, though there were instances in which the missionaries themselves were hypocritical in their denouncing of homosexuality this was not picked up by writers of African literature at the time. The gender politics was such that writers created an ideal image of the African male that was seen to have strong physical and spiritual characteristics to the effect that notions of homosexuality would be seen as improbable.

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