South African Gay Narratives, Michel Foucault and the Un-Queer Politics of Apartheid: Panopticism in the Age of Homophobia
|Mariana Jorge Lozano
|South African Gay Narratives, Michel Foucault and the Un-Queer Politics of Apartheid: Panopticism in the Age of Homophobia
Belén Martín Lucas
|LIÑA DE INVESTIGACIÓN
This thesis analyses, from a Foucauldian perspective, how queer sexualities are depicted in four South African novels. The aim of this project is to have a look at two different lines of thought in Foucault´s work, namely his writings about discipline and power, and his studies about human sexuality. The thesis argues that, in the particular context of apartheid South Africa, disciplinary mechanisms of population control and the repression of queer sexualities intersect in order to create a complex web of laws designed to maintain the hegemony of the ruling powers. Several disciplinary institutions are depicted in three of these novels, namely the police force, the educational system and the army, and the idea of the panoptic society, where surveillance actively reinforces the feeling of population control, is amply discussed. Moreover, the thesis analyses one last novel set and published in the post-apartheid period. In this story the embracing of queer sexualities represents a new period in which belonging to a particular group depends not exclusively on racial identity. During segregation the main indicator of someone´s identity was based on racial identification, but now, with the arrival of democracy, there are movements of people actively dedicated to creating new relational possibilities and new subjective realities through what Foucault named the “technologies of the self”. The thesis analyses all these questions related to the disciplining of queer sexualities using multiple works by Foucault and also other theoretical sources from the fields of Postcolonial Studies and Queer Theory.
|Apartheid, Foucault, Queer Theory, Technologies of the Self, Panoptic Society
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