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Tackling Prejudice and Discrimination Towards Families with Same-Sex Parents: An Exploratory Study in Italy

Abstract

Though studies have shown that the sexual orientation of parents does not influence their parenting skills or the well-being of their children, prejudice against same-sex families is still very widespread. Research has not sufficiently explored the ways in which parents tackle this prejudice. Using qualitative methodologies, in particular textual analyses, this study has analysed the discourse used by same-sex families to handle the prejudices that they face. The results highlighted that conflicts, which may even be ideological in nature, are sometimes created between traditional families and “atypical” families. These often result in estrangement and isolation from their own family and the communities to which they belong, in turn damaging the growth of the children involved. Furthermore, means for moving beyond conflict, sharing experiences and effectively tackling prejudices are also discussed.

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Notes

  1. PACS refers to a Civil Solidarity Pact, which was introduced in France in 1999; this is a contract for two people of any gender, which aims to formalise their life together. It protects couples in terms of rental relationships and tax matters, but does not regulate other areas, such as inheritance, parentage and adoption (Gentili 2013). With the approval of the law regarding civil unions in Italy, which remains a separate legal institution to marriage, all of the rights and duties of the latter are recognised and guaranteed, including those relating to matters of adoption.

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to express appreciation to Alessandra Bertoncello for valuable and constructive suggestions during this article improvement process.

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Correspondence to Antonio Iudici.

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Iudici, A., Masiello, P., Faccio, E. et al. Tackling Prejudice and Discrimination Towards Families with Same-Sex Parents: An Exploratory Study in Italy. Sexuality & Culture 24, 1544–1561 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12119-020-09711-x

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Keywords

  • Prejudice
  • Same-sex parenting
  • Comunication
  • Discourse analysis
  • Qualitative research