Why It’s Important to Look at Gay Natives’ History

  • Estevão Rafael Fernandes
  • Barbara M. Arisi


This chapter deals with the question that guides the entire book: What can we learn not about gay natives, but from them and their history? Our aim is to show that the fact that no one speaks about homosexuality among native peoples has to do with power relations − including those among the natives themselves. The chapter also presents a discussion about the implications of using certain expressions to understand homosexuality in intercultural contexts, questioning expressions used to refer to the phenomenon both within and outside these contexts. The word “homosexuality” is used as an umbrella expression to refer to all forms of sexuality that operate outside the hegemonic model. In this sense, “gay,” as an expression, gains analytical importance, since it can be understood only within the context of contact with non-Indians and the incorporation of settler/heteronormative language.


Indigenous queer Gay Indians LGBT Colonialism Sexuality Heteronormativity 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Estevão Rafael Fernandes
    • 1
  • Barbara M. Arisi
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Departamento de Ciências SociaisUniversidade Federal de RondôniaPorto VelhoBrazil
  2. 2.Pós-Graduação Interdisciplinar em Estudos Latino-AmericanosUniversidade Federal da Integração Latino-AmericanaFoz do IguaçuBrazil
  3. 3.Department of Social and Cultural AnthropologyVrije Universiteit AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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