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“Anti-LGBT bias” redirects here. For other uses, see Anti-LGBT.
For the Chumbawamba song, see Homophobia (song).

Homophobia encompasses a range of negative attitudes and feelings toward homosexuality or people who are identified or perceived as beinglesbiangaybisexual or transgender (LGBT). It can be expressed as antipathycontemptprejudice, aversion, or hatred, may be based on irrational fear, and is sometimes related to religious beliefs.[1][2][3][4][5][6]

Homophobia is observable in critical and hostile behavior such as discrimination and violence on the basis of sexual orientations that are non-heterosexual.[1][2] According to the 2010 Hate Crimes Statistics released by the FBI National Press Office, 19.3 percent of hate crimes across the United States “were motivated by a sexual orientation bias.”[7] Moreover, in a Southern Poverty Law Center 2010 Intelligence Reportextrapolating data from fourteen years (1995–2008), which had complete data available at the time, of the FBI’s national hate crime statistics found that LGBT people were “far more likely than any other minority group in the United States to be victimized by violent hate crime.”[8]

Recognized types of homophobia include institutionalized homophobia, e.g. religious homophobia and state-sponsored homophobia,[9] andinternalized homophobia, experienced by people who have same-sex attractions, regardless of how they identify. Forms of homophobia toward identifiable LGBT social groups have similar yet specific names: lesbophobia[10] – the intersection of homophobia and sexism directed against lesbians, biphobia – towards bisexuality and bisexual people, and transphobia, which targets transsexualism, transsexual and transgender people, and gender variance or gender role nonconformity.

Two words originate from homophobiahomophobic (adj.) and homophobe (n.), the latter word describing a person who displays homophobia or is thought to do so.


Although sexual attitudes tracing back to Ancient Greece (8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity (ca. 600 AD)) have been termed homophobia by scholars, the term itself is relatively new.[11] Coined by George Weinberg, a psychologist, in the 1960s,[12] the term homophobiais a blend[13][14][15] of (1) the word homosexual, itself a mix of neo-classical morphemes, and (2) phobia from the Greek φόβος, Phóbos, meaning “fear” or “morbid fear”. Weinberg is credited as the first person to have used the term in speech.[11] The word homophobia first appeared in print in an article written for the May 23, 1969, edition of the American pornographic magazine Screw, in which the word was used to refer to heterosexual men’s fear that others might think they are gay.[11]

Conceptualizing anti-LGBT prejudice as a social problem worthy of scholarly attention was not new. A 1969 article in Time described examples of negative attitudes toward homosexuality as “homophobia”, including “a mixture of revulsion and apprehension” which some called homosexual panic.[16] In 1971, Kenneth Smith used homophobia as a personality profile to describe the psychological aversion to homosexuality.[17]Weinberg also used it this way in his 1972 book Society and the Healthy Homosexual,[18] published one year before the American Psychiatric Association voted to remove homosexuality from its list of mental disorders.[19][20] Weinberg’s term became an important tool for gay and lesbian activists, advocates, and their allies.[11] He describes the concept as a medical phobia:[18]

[A] phobia about homosexuals…. It was a fear of homosexuals which seemed to be associated with a fear of contagion, a fear of reducing the things one fought for — home and family. It was a religious fear and it had led to great brutality as fear always does.[11]

In 1981, homophobia was used for the first time in The Times (of London) to report that the General Synod of the Church of England voted to refuse to condemn homosexuality.[21]


Brochure used by Save Our Children, a political coalition formed in 1977 inMiamiFlorida, U.S., to overturn a recently legislated county ordinance that banned discrimination in areas of housing, employment, and public accommodation based on sexual orientation

Homophobia manifests in different forms, and a number of different types have been postulated, among which are internalized homophobia, social homophobia, emotional homophobia, rationalized homophobia, and others.[22] There were also ideas to classify homophobia, racism, and sexism as an intolerant personality disorder.[23]

Homophobia has never been listed as part of a clinical taxonomy of phobias, neither in Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders(DSM) or International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD); homophobia is usually used in a non-clinical sense.[24]

In 1992, the American Psychiatric Association, recognizing the power of the stigma against homosexuality, issued the following statement, reaffirmed by the Board of Trustees, July 2011: “Whereas homosexuality per se implies no impairment in judgment, stability, reliability, or general social or vocational capabilities, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) calls on all international health organizations, psychiatric organizations, and individual psychiatrists in other countries to urge the repeal in their own countries of legislation that penalizes homosexual acts by consenting adults in private. Further, APA calls on these organizations and individuals to do all that is possible to decrease the stigma related to homosexuality wherever and whenever it may occur.”[25]

Institutionalized homophobia

Religious attitudes

Religious protestors at a pride parade in JerusalemIsrael, with a sign that reads, “Homo sex is immoral (Lev. 18/22)”. The association of homosexual sex with immorality or sinfulness is seen by many as a homophobic act.

Many world religions contain anti-homosexual teachings, while other religions have varying degrees of ambivalence, neutrality, or incorporate teachings regarding homosexuals as third gender. Even within some religions which generally discourage homosexuality, there are also people who view homosexuality positively, and some religious denominations bless or conduct same-sex marriages. There also exist so-called Queer religions, dedicated to serving the spiritual needs of LGBTQI persons. Queer theology seeks to provide a counterpoint to religious homophobia.[26]

Christianity and the Bible

The Bible, especially the Old Testament, contains some passages commonly interpreted as condemning homosexuality or same-gender sexual relations. Leviticus 18:22, says “Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.” The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrahis also commonly seen as a condemnation of homosexuality. Christians and Jews who oppose homosexuality often cite such passages; historical context and interpretation is more complicated. Scholarly debate over the interpretation of these passages has focused on placing them in proper historical context, for instance pointing out that Sodom’s sins are historically interpreted as being other than homosexuality, and on the translation of rare or unusual words in the passages in question. In Religion Dispatches magazine, Candace Chellew-Hodge argues that the six or so verses that are often cited to condemn LGBT people are referring instead to “abusive sex.” She states that the Bible has no condemnation for “loving, committed, gay and lesbian relationships” and that Jesus was silent on the subject.[27]

The official teaching of the Catholic Church regarding homosexuality is that same-sex behavior should not be expressed.[28] The Catechism of the Catholic Church States that, “‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.’…They are contrary to the natural law…. Under no circumstances can they be approved.”[29] The Catholic Church also campaigns politically against LGBT rights.

Islam and sharia

In some cases, the distinction between religious homophobia and state-sponsored homophobia is not clear, a key example being territories underIslamic authority. All major Islamic sects forbid homosexuality, which is a crime under Sharia Law and treated as such in most Muslim countries. InAfghanistan, for instance, homosexuality carried the death penalty under the Taliban. After their fall, homosexuality went from a capital crime to one punished with fines and prison sentences. The legal situation in the United Arab Emirates, however, is unclear.

In 2009, the International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA) published a report entitled State Sponsored Homophobia 2009,[30] which is based on research carried out by Daniel Ottosson at Södertörn University College, Stockholm, Sweden. This research found that of the 80 countries around the world that continue to consider homosexuality illegal:[31][32]

  • Five carry the death penalty for homosexual activity: IranMauritaniaSaudi ArabiaSudanYemen.[33] Since the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran, the Iranian government has executed more than 4,000 people charged with homosexual acts.[34][35] In Saudi Arabia, the maximum punishment for homosexuality is public execution, but the government will use other punishments – e.g., fines, jail time, whipping – and even forced sex change as alternatives, unless it feels that people engaging in homosexual activity are challenging state authority by engaging in LGBT social movements.[36]

In 2001, Al-Muhajiroun, an international organization seeking the establishment of a global Islamic caliphate, issued a fatwa declaring that all members of The Al-Fatiha Foundation (which advances the cause of gaylesbian, and transgender Muslims) were murtadd, or apostates, and condemning them to death. Because of the threat and because they come from conservative societies, many members of the foundation’s site still prefer to be anonymous so as to protect their identity while continuing a tradition of secrecy.[37]

See also: Mahmoud Asgari and Ayaz MarhoniArsham ParsiIrshad Manji

State-sponsored homophobia

State-sponsored homophobia includes the criminalization and penalization of homosexuality, hate speech from government figures, and other forms of discrimination, violence, persecution of LGBT people.[38]

Past regimes

In medieval Europe, homosexuality was considered sodomy and was punishable by death. Persecutions reached their height during the Medieval Inquisitions, when the sects of Cathars and Waldensians were accused of fornication and sodomy, alongside accusations of satanism. In 1307, accusations of sodomy and homosexuality were major charges leveled during the Trial of the Knights Templar.[39] The theologian Thomas Aquinaswas influential in linking condemnations of homosexuality with the idea of natural law, arguing that “special sins are against nature, as, for instance, those that run counter to the intercourse of male and female natural to animals, and so are peculiarly qualified as unnatural vices.”[40]

Although bisexuality was accepted as normal human behavior in Ancient China,[41] homophobia became ingrained in the late Qing Dynasty and theRepublic of China from interactions with the Christian West,[42] and homosexual behaviour was outlawed in 1740.[43] When Mao Zedong came to power, the government thought of homosexuality as “social disgrace or a form of mental illness”, and “[d]uring the cultural revolution (1966–76), people who were homosexual faced their worst period of persecution in Chinese history.” Despite there being no law in the communist People’s Republic against homosexuality, “police regularly rounded up gays and lesbians.” Other laws were used to prosecute homosexual people and they were “charged with hooliganism or disturbing public order.”[44]

The Soviet Union under Vladimir Lenin decriminalized homosexuality in 1922, long before many other European countries. The Soviet Communist Party effectively legalized no-fault divorce, abortion and homosexuality, when they abolished all the old Tsarist laws and the initial Soviet criminal code kept these liberal sexual policies in place.[45] However, some left-wing figures have considered homosexuality a “bourgeois disease”, a right-wing movement or a “Western disease”.[46] Lenin’s emancipation was reversed a decade later by Joseph Stalin and homosexuality remained illegal under Article 121 until the Yeltsin era.

Homosexuals were one of the many groups alongside Jews that were murdered during the Holocaust.

Current governments

Protests in New York City againstUganda‘s Anti-Homosexuality Bill.

The North Korean government condemns Western gay culture as a vice caused by the decadence of capitalist society, and denounces it as promotingconsumerismclassism, and promiscuity.[47] In North Korea, “violating the rules of collective socialist life” can be punished with up to two years’ imprisonment.[48] However, according to the North Korean government, “As a country that has embraced science and rationalism, the DPRK recognizes that many individuals are born with homosexuality as a genetic trait and treats them with due respect. Homosexuals in the DPRK have never been subject to repression, as in many capitalist regimes around the world.”

Robert Mugabe, the president of Zimbabwe, has waged a violent campaign against LGBT people, arguing that before colonisation, Zimbabweans did not engage in homosexual acts.[49] His first major public condemnation of homosexuality was in August 1995, during the Zimbabwe International Book Fair.[50] He told an audience: “If you see people parading themselves as lesbians and gays, arrest them and hand them over to the police!”[51] In September 1995, Zimbabwe’s parliament introduced legislation banning homosexual acts.[50] In 1997, a court found Canaan Banana, Mugabe’s predecessor and the first President of Zimbabwe, guilty of 11 counts of sodomy and indecent assault.[52][53]

Internalized homophobia

Jamey Rodemeyer campaigned against homophobia before his death.

Internalized homophobia refers to negative stereotypes, beliefs, stigma, and prejudice about homosexuality and LGBT people that a person with same-sex attraction turns inward on themselves, whether or not they identify as LGBT.[54][55][56] The degree to which someone is affected by these ideas depends on how much and which ideas they have consciously and subconsciously internalized.[57] These negative beliefs can be mitigated with education, life experience and therapy,[56][58] especially with gay-friendly psychotherapy/analysis.[59] Internalized homophobia also applies to conscious or unconscious behaviors which a person feels the need to promote or conform to cultural expectations of heteronormativity or heterosexism.[54] This can include extreme repression and denial coupled with forced outward displays of heteronormative behavior for the purpose of appearing or attempting to feel “normal” or “accepted.”[54]Expressions of internalized homophobia can also be subtle. Some less overt behaviors may include making assumptions about the gender of a person’s romantic partner, or about gender roles.[54] Some researchers also apply this label to LGBT people who support “compromise” policies, such as those that findcivil unions acceptable in place of same-sex marriage.[60]

Some studies have shown that people who are homophobic are more likely to have repressed homosexual desires.[61] In 1996, a controlled study of 64 heterosexual men (half said they were homophobic by experience, with self-reported orientation) at the University of Georgia found that men who were found to be homophobic (as measured by the Index of Homophobia)[62] were considerably more likely to experience more erectile responses when exposed to homoerotic images than non-homophobic men.[63] Another study in 2012 arrived at similar results when researchers found that students who came from “the most rigid anti-gay homes” were most likely to reveal repressed homosexual attraction.[64] The researchers noted that this explained why some religious leaders who denounce homosexuality are later revealed to have secret homosexual relations.[64] The researchers noted that “these people are at war with themselves and are turning this internal conflict outward.”[64]

Researcher Iain R. Williamson, in his 1998 work “Internalized Homophobia and Health Issues Affecting Lesbians and Gay Men” finds the termhomophobia to be “highly problematic” but for reasons of continuity and consistency with the majority of other publications on the issue retains its use rather than using more accurate but obscure terminology.[56] The phrase internalized sexual stigma is sometimes used in place to represent internalized homophobia.[63] An internalized stigma arises when a person believes negative stereotypes about themselves, regardless of where the stereotype come from. It can also refer to many stereotypes beyond sexuality and gender roles. Internalized homophobia can cause discomfort with and disapproval of one’s own sexual orientationEgo-dystonic sexual orientation or egodystonic homophobia, for instance, is a condition characterized by having a sexual orientation or an attraction that is at odds with one’s idealized self-image, causing anxiety and a desire to change one’s orientation or become more comfortable with one’s sexual orientation. Such a situation may cause extreme repression of homosexual desires.[62] In other cases, a conscious internal struggle may occur for some time, often pitting deeply held religious or social beliefs against strong sexual and emotional desires. This discordance can cause clinical depression, and a higher rate of suicide among LGBT youth (up to 30 percent of non-heterosexual youth attempt suicide) has been attributed to this phenomenon.[57] Psychotherapy, such as gay affirmative psychotherapy, and participation in a sexual-minority affirming group can help resolve the internal conflicts, such as between religious beliefs and sexual identity.[63] Even informal therapies that address understanding and accepting of non-heterosexual orientations can prove effective.[57] Many diagnostic “Internalized Homophobia Scales” can be used to measure a person’s discomfort with their sexuality and some can be used by people regardless of gender or sexual orientation. Critics of the scales note that they presume a discomfort with non-heterosexuality which in itself enforces heternormativity.[62]

Social homophobia

Ryan Halligan used to receive homophobic messages

The fear of being identified as gay can be considered as a form of social homophobia. Theorists including Calvin Thomas and Judith Butler have suggested that homophobia can be rooted in an individual’s fear of being identified as gay. Homophobia in men is correlated with insecurity about masculinity.[65][66] For this reason, homophobia is allegedly rampant in sports, and in the subculture of its supporters that is considered stereotypicallymale, such as association football and rugby.[67]

These theorists have argued that a person who expresses homophobic thoughts and feelings does so not only to communicate their beliefs about the class of gay people, but also to distance themselves from this class and its social status. Thus, by distancing themselves from gay people, they are reaffirming their role as a heterosexual in a heteronormative culture, thereby attempting to prevent themselves from being labeled and treated as a gay person. This interpretation alludes to the idea that a person may posit violent opposition to “the Other” as a means of establishing their own identity as part of the majority and thus gaining social validation.

Nancy J. Chodorow states that homophobia can be viewed as a method of protection of male masculinity.[68]

Various psychoanalytic theories explain homophobia as a threat to an individual’s own same-sex impulses, whether those impulses are imminent or merely hypothetical. This threat causes repression, denial or reaction formation.[69]

Distribution of attitudes

Westboro Baptist Churchprotesters, in Oklahoma, 2005

American Democrats andRepublicans have differing attitudes towards gay and lesbian people

Disapproval of homosexuality and of gay people is not evenly distributed throughout society, but is more or less pronounced according to age, ethnicity, geographic location, race, sex, social class, education, partisan identification and religious status.[70] According to UK HIV/AIDS charity AVERT, religious views, lack of homosexual feelings or experiences, and lack of interaction with gay people are strongly associated with such views.[71]

The anxiety of heterosexual individuals (particularly adolescents whose construction of heterosexual masculinity is based in part on not being seen as gay) that others may identify them as gay[72][73] has also been identified by Michael Kimmel as an example of homophobia.[74] The taunting of boys seen as eccentric (and who are not usually gay) is said to be endemic in rural and suburban American schools, and has been associated with risk-taking behavior and outbursts of violence (such as a spate of school shootings) by boys seeking revenge or trying to assert their masculinity.[75] Homophobic bullying is also very common in schools in the United Kingdom.[76]

In some cases, the works of authors who merely have the word “Gay” in their name (Gay TalesePeter Gay) or works about things also contain the name (Enola Gay) have been destroyed because of a perceived pro-homosexual bias.[77]

In the United States, attitudes about people who are homosexual may vary on the basis of partisan identification. Republicans are far more likely thanDemocrats to have negative attitudes about people who are gay and lesbian, according to surveys conducted by the National Election Studies from 2000 through 2004. This disparity is shown in the graph on the right, which is from a book published in 2008 by Joseph Fried. The tendency of Republicans to view gay and lesbian people negatively could be based on homophobia, religious beliefs, or conservatism with respect to the traditional family.[78]

Homophobia also varies by region; statistics show that the Southern United States has more reports of anti-gay prejudice than any other region in the US.[79]

In a 1998 address, author, activist, and civil rights leader Coretta Scott King stated that “Homophobia is like racism and anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry in that it seeks to dehumanize a large group of people, to deny their humanity, their dignity and personhood.”[80] One study of white adolescent males conducted at the University of Cincinnati by Janet Baker has been used to argue that negative feelings towards gay people are also associated with otherdiscriminatory behaviors.[81] According to the study, hatred of gay people, anti-Semitism, and racism are “likely companions.”[81] Baker hypothesized “maybe it’s a matter of power and looking down on all you think are at the bottom.”[81] A study performed in 2007 in the UK for the charity Stonewall reports that up to 90 percent of the population support anti-discrimination laws protecting gay and lesbian people.[82]

Social constructs and culture can perpetuate homophobic attitudes. Such cultural sources in the black community include:

Sources of homophobia in the white community include:

  • The Arts
Films and literature that project negative gay stereotypes.[89]

Professional sports in many countries involves homophobic expressions by star athletes and by fans. Incidents in the United States have included:

  • Hockey
The homophobic chants and attitudes of certain fans, for example the labeling of one fan who frequently dances at games as “Homo Larry”, have been protested by attendees of New York Rangers games and by New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn.[91]
  • Basketball
All-Star National Basketball Association player Tim Hardaway drew criticism after he said on the “790 the Ticket” radio show, “Well, you know, I hate gay people. I let it be known I don’t like gay people. I don’t like to be around gay people. I’m homophobic. I don’t like it, it shouldn’t be in the world, in the United States, I don’t like it.”[92]

However, the major professional sports leagues do not advocate homophobia, and regard the LGBT community as an important marketing base.[93][94][95]

Efforts to combat homophobia

An anti-homophobia protester at a demonstration inParis, in 2005

Most international human rights organizations, such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, condemn laws that make homosexual relations between consenting adults a crime. Since 1994, the United Nations Human Rights Committee has also ruled that such laws violated the right to privacy guaranteed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. In 2008, the Roman Catholic Churchissued a statement which “urges States to do away with criminal penalties against [homosexual persons].” The statement, however, was addressed to reject a resolution by the UN Assembly that would have precisely called for an end of penalties against homosexuals in the world.[96] In March 2010, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted a recommendation on measures to combat discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity, described by CoE Secretary General as the first legal instrument in the world dealing specifically with one of the most long-lasting and difficult forms of discrimination to combat.[97]

To combat homophobia, the LGBT community uses events such as gay pride parades and political activism (See gay pride). This is criticized by some[who?]as counter-productive though, as gay pride parades showcase what could be seen as more “extreme” sexuality: fetish-based and gender-variant aspects of LGBT culture. One form of organized resistance to homophobia is the International Day Against Homophobia (or IDAHO),[98] first celebrated May 17, 2005 in related activities in more than 40 countries.[99] The four largest countries of Latin America (Argentina, Brazil, Mexico and Colombia) developed mass media campaigns against homophobia since 2002.[100]

In addition to public expression, legislation has been designed, controversially, to oppose homophobia, as in hate speechhate crime, and laws againstdiscrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Successful preventative strategies against homophobic prejudice and bullying in schools have included teaching pupils about historical figures who were gay, or who suffered discrimination because of their sexuality.[101]

Some argue that anti-LGBT prejudice is immoral and goes above and beyond the effects on that class of people. Warren J. Blumenfeld argues that this emotion gains a dimension beyond itself, as a tool for extreme right-wing conservatives and fundamentalist religious groups and as a restricting factor on gender-relations as to the weight associated with performing each role accordingly.[102] Furthermore, Blumenfeld in particular stated:

“Anti-gay bias causes young people to engage in sexual behavior earlier in order to prove that they are straight. Anti-gay bias contributed significantly to the spread of the AIDS epidemic. Anti-gay bias prevents the ability of schools to create effective honest sexual education programs that would save children’s lives and prevent STDs (sexually transmitted diseases).”[102]

Criticism of meaning and purpose

Distinctions and proposed alternatives

Researchers have proposed alternative terms to describe prejudice and discrimination against LGBT people. Some of these alternatives show more semantic transparency while others do not include –phobia:

  • Homoerotophobia, being a possible precursor term to homophobia, was coined by Wainwright Churchill and documented in Homosexual Behavior Among Males in 1967.
  • The etymology of homophobia citing the union of homos and phobos is the basis for LGBT historian Boswell’s criticism of the term and for his suggestion in 1980 of the alternativehomosexophobia.[103]
  • Homonegativity is based on the term homonegativism used by Hudson and Ricketts in a 1980 paper; they coined the term for their research in order to avoid homophobia, which they regarded as being unscientific in its presumption of motivation.[104]
  • Heterosexism refers to a system of negative attitudes, bias, and discrimination in favour of opposite-sex sexual orientation and relationships.[105] p. 13 It can include the presumption that everyone is heterosexual or that opposite-sex attractions and relationships are the only norm[106] and therefore superior.
  • Sexual prejudice – Researcher at the University of California, Davis Gregory M. Herek preferred sexual prejudice as being descriptive, free of presumptions about motivations, and lacking value judgments as to the irrationality or immorality of those so labeled.[107][108] He compared homophobiaheterosexism, and sexual prejudice, and, in preferring the third term, noted that homophobia was “probably more widely used and more often criticized.” He also observed that “Its critics note that homophobia implicitly suggests that antigay attitudes are best understood as an irrational fear and that they represent a form of individual psychopathology rather than a socially reinforced prejudice.”


People and groups have objected to the use of the term “homophobia”.[109][110][111]

Non-neutral phrasing

Use of homophobiahomophobic, and homophobe has been criticized as pejorative against LGBT rights opponentsBehavioral scientists William O’Donohue and Christine Caselles state that “as [homophobia] is usually used, makes an illegitimately pejorative evaluation of certain open and debatable value positions, much like the former disease construct of homosexuality” itself, arguing that the term may be used as an ad hominem argument against those who advocate values or positions of which the user does not approve.[112]

In 2012 the Associated Press Style Book was revised to advise against using non-clinical words with the suffix -phobia, including homophobia, in “political and social contexts.” AP Deputy Standards Editor Dave Minthorn said the word homophobia suggests a severe mental disorder, and that it could be substituted with “anti-gay” or similar phrasing.[113][114] The AP’s decision was criticized in some media outlets, especially those in the LGBT area,[115] who argued that homophobia did not necessarily have to be interpreted in a strict clinical sense.[116][117]


The term heterophobia is sometimes used to describe reverse discrimination or negative attitudes towards heterosexual people and opposite-sex relationships.[118] The scientific use of “heterophobia” in sexology is restricted to few researchers, notably those who question Alfred Kinsey‘s sex research.[119][120] To date, the existence or extent of heterophobia is mostly unrecognized by sexologists.[118] Beyond sexology there is no consensus as to the meaning of the term because it is also used to mean “fear of the opposite” such as in Pierre-André Taguieff‘s The Force of Prejudice: On Racism and Its Doubles (2001).

Referring to the debate on both meaning and use, SUNY lecturer Raymond J. Noonan, in his 1999 presentation to The Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS) and the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT) Conference[118] states:

The term heterophobia is confusing for some people for several reasons. On the one hand, some look at it as just another of the many me-too social constructions that have arisen in the pseudoscience of victimology in recent decades. (Many of us recall John Money’s 1995 criticism of the ascendancy of victimology and its negative impact on sexual science.) Others look at the parallelism between heterophobia and homophobia, and suggest that the former trivializes the latter… For others, it is merely a curiosity or parallel-construction word game. But for others still, it is part of both the recognition and politicization of heterosexuals’ cultural interests in contrast to those of gays—particularly where those interests are perceived to clash.

Stephen M. White and Louis R. Franzini introduced the related term of “heteronegativism” to refer to the considerable range of negative feelings that some gay individuals may hold and express toward heterosexuals. This term is preferred to “heterophobia” because it does not imply extreme or irrational fear.[121]

See also


  1. Jump up to:a b “webster.com”. 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
  2. Jump up to:a b “homophobia”Dictonary.com. Dictonary.com. 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
  3. Jump up^ “European Parliament resolution on homophobia in Europe”, Texts adopted Wednesday, 18 January 2006 – Strasbourg Final edition- “Homophobia in Europe” at “A” point
  4. Jump up^ “homophobia, n.2”Oxford English DictionaryOxford University Press. Additions series, 1993; online version June 2012. Retrieved 19 June 2012. “Fear or hatred of homosexuals and homosexuality.”
  5. Jump up^ Dowd, Mark (26 February 2013). “What lies behind religious homophobia”The Guardian(London). Retrieved 2013-02-25.
  6. Jump up^ Mark McCormack (23 May 2013). The Declining Significance of Homophobia. Oxford University Press. p. 35. ISBN 978-0-19-999094-8. Retrieved 31 July 2013.
  7. Jump up^ FBI National Press Office. 2011. “FBI Releases 2010 Hate Crime Statistics. FBI [Internet]. Available from: http://www.fbi.gov/news/pressrel/press-releases/fbi-releases-2010-hate-crime-statistics.
  8. Jump up^ Intelligence Report, Winter 2010, Issue Number: 140, Anti-Gay Hate Crimes: Doing the Math by Mark Potok, Senior Fellow [1]
  9. Jump up^ International Lesbian and Gay Association. “State-sponsored Homophobia”
  10. Jump up^ “Lesbophobia”. ILGA. Retrieved 2012-04-14.
  11. Jump up to:a b c d e Herek, Gregory (April 2004). “Beyond “Homophobia”: Thinking about sexual prejudice and stigma in the twenty-first century”Sexuality Research and Social Policy(Springer) 1 (2): 6–24. doi:10.1525/srsp.2004.1.2.6.
  12. Jump up^ “Homophobia”. glbtq. Retrieved 2012-04-14.
  13. Jump up^ “Oxford Dictionaries”.
  14. Jump up^ “American Heritage Dictionary”.
  15. Jump up^ “Online Etymology Dictionary”.
  16. Jump up^ “Behavior: The Homosexual: Newly Visible, Newly Understood”Time 94 (18). October 1969.
  17. Jump up^ Smith, Kenneth T (1971). “Homophobia: a tentative personality profile”. Psychological Reports29 (3). pp. 1091–4. doi:10.2466/pr0.1971.29.3f.1091ISSN 0033-2941.OCLC 100640283PMID 5139344.
  18. Jump up to:a b Weinberg, George (1973) [1972]. Society and the healthy homosexual. Garden City, New York Anchor Press Doubleday & Co. ISBN 978-0-385-05083-8.
  19. Jump up^ Freedman, Alfred M (September 1, 2000). “Recalling APA’s Historic Step”APA News.ISSN 0033-2704. Retrieved 2010-08-21.
  20. Jump up^ Macionis, John J.; Plummer, Kenneth (2005). Sociology: a global introduction (3 ed.). Pearson Education. p. 332. ISBN 978-0-13-128746-4.
  21. Jump up^ Clifford Longley (February 28, 1981). “Homosexuality best seen as a handicap, Dr Runcie says”. London: The Times. “Let us recognize where the problem lies – in the dislike and distaste felt by many heterosexuals for homosexuals, a problem we have come to callhomophobia.” and Gledhill, Ruth (August 7, 2008). “New light on Archbishop of Canterbury’s view on homosexuality”The Times (London).
  22. Jump up^ The Riddle Homophobia Scale at the Wayback Machine (archived September 4, 2006) from Allies Committee website, Department of Student Life, Texas A&M University
  23. Jump up^ Guindon MH, Green AG, Hanna FJ (April 2003). “Intolerance and Psychopathology: Toward a General Diagnosis for Racism, Sexism, and Homophobia”Am J Orthopsychiatry 73 (2): 167–76. doi:10.1037/0002-9432.73.2.167PMID 12769238.
  24. Jump up^ Treichler, Paula A. (October 1987). “AIDS, Homophobia, and Biomedical Discourse: An Epidemic of Signification”. AIDS: Cultural Analysis/Cultural Activism 43 (Winter): 31–70.doi:10.2307/3397564OCLC 17873405.
  25. Jump up^ American Psychiatric Association “Position Statement on Homosexuality”.
  26. Jump up^ “Queer Spirituality”.[dead link]
  27. Jump up^ Religion Dispatches magazine, Candace Chellew-Hodge
  28. Jump up^ In the United States, a February 2012 Pew Research Center poll shows that Catholics support gay marriage by a margin of 52% to 37%.(ANALYSIS February 7, 2012 (2012-02-07).“Religion and Attitudes Toward Same-Sex Marriage – Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life”. Pewforum.org. Retrieved 2012-07-05.) That is a shift upwards from 2010, when 46% of Catholics favored gay marriage.(Biden’s support for gay marriage matches most Catholics’ views, By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor [2])
  29. Jump up^ Ratzinger J., et al. 1995. Part Three Life in Christ. In: Catechism of the Catholic Church. 1540 Broadway, New York, New York: Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group, Inc. p. 625.
  30. Jump up^ ILGA: 2009 Report on State Sponsored Homophobia (2009)[dead link]
  31. Jump up^ “ILGA:7 countries still put people to death for same-sex acts”.
  32. Jump up^ “Homosexuality and Islam – ReligionFacts”.
  33. Jump up to:a b “ILGA: Lesbian and Gay Rights in the World (2009)”.
  34. Jump up^ Steven Eke (28 July 2005). “Iran ’must stop youth executions’”BBC News. “Human Rights Watch calls on Iran to end juvenile executions, after claims that two boys were executed for being gay.”
  35. Jump up^ Moore, Patrick (January 31, 2006). Murder and HypocrisyThe Advocate. p. 37. Retrieved December 31, 2013. “Homan, and organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Iranians in exile, estimates that more than 4,000 gay Iranians have been executed in the country since the Islamic revolution of 1979.”
  36. Jump up^ Whitaker, Brian (18 March 2005). “Arrests at Saudi ’gay wedding’”The Observer (London). “Saudi executions are not systematically reported, and officials deny that the death penalty is applied for same-sex activity alone.”
  37. Jump up^ Aldrich, Robert (2006). Gay life and culture : a world history. Universe. ISBN 978-0-7893-1511-3.
  38. Jump up^ Bruce-Jones, Eddie; Itaborahy, Lucas Paoli (May 2011). “State-sponsored Homophobia”.ilga.org. Retrieved October 15, 2011.
  39. Jump up^ G. Legman “The Guilt of the Templars” (New York: Basic Books, 1966): 11.
  40. Jump up^ Crompton, Louis, Homosexuality and Civilization, Harvard University, 2003. Page 187
  41. Jump up^ Crompton, Louis, Homosexuality and Civilization, Harvard University, 2003
  42. Jump up^ Kang, Wenqing. Obsession: male same-sex relations in China, 1900-1950, Hong Kong University Press. Page 3
  43. Jump up^ Francoeur, Robert T.; Noonan, Raymond J. (2004). The Continuum complete international encyclopedia of sexuality. The Continuum International Publishing Group, Inc. ISBN 0-8264-1488-5.
  44. Jump up^ “History of Chinese homosexuality”Shanghai Star. 2004-04-01. Retrieved July 3, 2009.
  45. Jump up^ Hazard, John N; Columbia University. Russian Institute (1965). Unity and diversity in socialist law. [New York] Russian Institute, School of International Affairs, Columbia University.OCLC 80991633.
  46. Jump up^ Hekma, Gert; Oosterhuis, Harry; Steakley, James D (1995). Gay men and the sexual history of the political left. Harrington Park Press. ISBN 978-1-56023-067-0.
  47. Jump up^ Global Gayz. “Gay North Korea News & Reports 2005”. Archived from the original on 2005-10-18.. Retrieved on May 5, 2006
  48. Jump up^ Spartacus International Gay Guide, page 1217. Bruno Gmunder Verlag, 2007.
  49. Jump up^ Ember, Carol R; Ember, Melvin (2004). Encyclopedia of sex and gender : men and women in the world’s cultures. Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers. p. 213. ISBN 978-0-306-47770-6.
  50. Jump up to:a b Epprecht, Marc (2004). Hungochani : the history of a dissident sexuality in southern Africa. Montreal. p. 180. ISBN 978-0-7735-2751-5.
  51. Jump up^ Under African Skies, Part I: ‘Totally unacceptable to cultural norms’ Kaiwright.com
  52. Jump up^ Veit-Wild, Flora; Naguschewski, Dirk (2005). Body, sexuality, and gender. Rodopi. p. 93.ISBN 978-90-420-1626-2.
  53. Jump up^ Canaan Banana, president jailed in sex scandal, dies The Guardian
  54. Jump up to:a b c d Sexuality Research and Social Policy, Volume 1, Number 2 (2004), 6-24,doi:10.1525/srsp.2004.1.2.6, Beyond “Homophobia”: Thinking about sexual prejudice and stigma in the twenty-first century, Gregory M. Herek.
  55. Jump up^ Herek, G M; Cogan, J C; Gillis, J R; Glunt, E K (1998). “Correlates of Internalized Homophobia in a Community Sample of Lesbians and Gay Men”J Gay Lesbian Med Assoc2 (1). pp. 17–26. ISSN 1090-7173OCLC 206392016.
  56. Jump up to:a b c Oxford Journal of Medicine, Health Education Research, Volume 15, Issue 1, Pp. 97-107, Iain R. Williamson, in their 1998 work “Internalized Homophobia and Health Issues Affecting Lesbians and Gay Men.”
  57. Jump up to:a b c Journal of Adolescent Health Care, Volume 9, Issue 2, March 1988, pp. 114–122, Mental health issues of gay and lesbian adolescents, John C. Gonsiorek, Ph.D.
  58. Jump up^ Martino, William. 2000. “Policing Masculinities: Investigating the Role of Homophobia and Heteronormativity in the Lives of Adolescent School Boys.” Journal of Men’s Studies 8 (2):213–236.
  59. Jump up^ HTS Theological Studies/Teologiese Studies > Vol 63, No 1 (2007), Hegemony and the Internalisation of Homophobia Caused by Heteronormativity, Y Dreyer.
  60. Jump up^ Marriage amendments and psychological distress in lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) adults. Rostosky, Sharon Scales; Riggle, Ellen D. B.; Horne, Sharon G.; Miller, Angela D. Journal of Counseling Psychology, Vol 56(1), Jan 2009, 56-66. doi:10.1037/a0013609.
  61. Jump up^ Summarized in an American Psychological Association press release, August 1996: “New Study Links Homophobia with Homosexual Arousal” at the Wayback Machine (archived February 2, 2004).
  62. Jump up to:a b c Adams HE, Wright LW, Lohr BA (August 1996). “Is homophobia associated with homosexual arousal?”J Abnorm Psychol 105 (3): 440–5. doi:10.1037/0021-843X.105.3.440PMID 8772014.Summarized in an American Psychological Associationpress release, August 1996: “New Study Links Homophobia with Homosexual Arousal” at the Wayback Machine (archived February 2, 2004).
  63. Jump up to:a b c “Appropriate Therapeutic Responses to Sexual Orientation”.
  64. Jump up to:a b c Why Homophobes Hate, The Week, April 27, 2012
  65. Jump up^ “Masculinity Challenged, Men Prefer War and SUVs”.
  66. Jump up^ “Homophobia and Hip-Hop”. PBS. Retrieved 2011-10-16.
  67. Jump up^ “Fans’ culture hard to change”.
  68. Jump up^ Nancy J. Chodorow. Statement in a public forum on homophobia by The American Psychoanalytic Foundation, 1999
  69. Jump up^ West, D.J. Homosexuality re-examined. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1977.ISBN 0-8166-0812-1
  70. Jump up^ Herek, Gregory M. (2004). “Beyond “Homophobia”: Thinking about sexual prejudice and stigma in the twenty-first century”Sexuality Research and Social Policy. Number 2 1: 6–24.doi:10.1525/srsp.2004.1.2.6. Retrieved 26 May 2012.
  71. Jump up^ “Prejudice & Attitudes to Gay Men & Lesbians”.
  72. Jump up^ Epstein, D. (1995). “Keeping them in their place: Hetero/sexist harassment, gender and the enforcement of heterosexuality.” In J. Holland&L. Adkins (Eds.), Sex, sensibility and the gendered body. London: Macmillan.
  73. Jump up^ Herek, Gregory M; Society for the Psychological Study of Lesbian and Gay Issues (1998).Stigma and sexual orientation : understanding prejudice against lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals. Psychological perspectives on lesbian and gay issues, v. 4. Sage Publications.ISBN 978-0-8039-5385-7.
  74. Jump up^ Kimmel, M. (1994). Masculinity as homophobia: Fear, shame and silence in the construction of gender identity. In H. Brod & M. Kaufman (Eds.), Theorizing masculinities (pp. 119–141). Newbury Park, CA: Sage
  75. Jump up^ Kimmel, Michael S; Mahler, Matthew (2003). “Adolescent Masculinity, Homophobia, and Violence: Random School Shootings, 1982–2001”. Am Behav Sci 46 (10). pp. 1439–58.doi:10.1177/0002764203046010010ISSN 0002-7642OCLC 437621566.
  76. Jump up^ “How fair is Britain? the first Triennial Review”Equality and Human Rights Commission. Retrieved 8 November 2010.
  77. Jump up^ Petras, Kathryn; Petras, Ross (2003). Unusually Stupid Americans (A compendium of all American Stupidity). New York: Villard Books. p. 103. ISBN 0-9658068-7-1.
  78. Jump up^ Fried, Joseph (2008). Democrats and Republicans—rhetoric and reality : comparing the voters in statistics and anecdotes. Algora Pub. p. 185. ISBN 0-87586-605-0.
  79. Jump up^ Lyons, P. M., Jr.; Anthony, C. M.; Davis, K. M.; Fernandez, K.; Torres, A. N.; Marcus, D. K. (2005). “Police Judgements of Culpability and Homophobia”Appl Psychol Crim Justice 1 (1): 1–14.
  80. Jump up^ Chicago Defender, April 1, 1998, front page
  81. Jump up to:a b c “Homophobia, racism likely companions, study shows”Jet. January 10, 1994. p. 12.
  82. Jump up^ Muir, Hugh (May 23, 2007). “Majority support gay equality rights, poll finds”. London: Guardian. Retrieved May 4, 2010.
  83. Jump up^ Urban, Robert (June 1, 2006). “Taking the Homophobia Out of Hip-Hop: A Progress Report”. After Elton.
  84. Jump up^ “Beyond Beats and Rhymes”. pbs.org. Retrieved 2011-10-16.
  85. Jump up^ “Issue Brief: Gender Violence and Homophobia”.[dead link]
  86. Jump up^ Banerjee, Neela (January 21, 2006). “Black Churches’ Attitudes Toward Gay Parishioners Is Discussed at Conference”The New York Times. Retrieved May 4, 2010.
  87. Jump up^ Michel, Amanda (January 25, 2008). “Obama takes on the black community’s homophobia”Huffington Post.
  88. Jump up^ “black gay christian church and homosexuality OPERATION: REBIRTH”.
  89. Jump up^ Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman (1995). “The Celluloid Closet“. Film.
  90. Jump up^ “Catholic Answers on Homosexuality”http://www.catholic.com. Retrieved 11/09/2011.
  91. Jump up^ Thomas, Katie (March 21, 2008). “When Tradition and Taunts Collide: Gay Hockey Fans Criticize Garden”The New York Times. Retrieved May 4, 2010.
  92. Jump up^ “Love and Basketball: Homophobia in Sports”.
  93. Jump up^ Homophobia in professional sports – Features]
  94. Jump up^ “Gay and lesbian sports site, for sports enthusiasts and athletes worldwide”. Gay Sports. Retrieved 2009-08-08.
  95. Jump up^ “Archive 2008, gaybaseballdays.com”. Archived from the original on 2008-07-15.
  96. Jump up^ “Statement of the Holy See Delegation at the 63rd Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations on the Declaration on Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity”. vatican.va. 18 December 2008.
  97. Jump up^ “Council of Europe to advance human rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons”. coe.int. 2010-04-01.
  98. Jump up^ Towards an international Day against Homophobia“, April 10, 2004
  99. Jump up^ 1st Annual International Day Against Homophobia to be Celebrated in over 40 Countries on May 17[dead link]“, May 12, 2005
  100. Jump up^ “Campaigns against Homophobia in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, and Mexico”. Pan American Health Organization. Retrieved 2011-10-16.
  101. Jump up^ Shepherd, Jessica (26 October 2010). “Lessons on gay history cut homophobic bullying in north London school”. The Guardian. Retrieved 9 November 2010.
  102. Jump up to:a b Blumenfeld, Warren J (1992). Homophobia : how we all pay the price. Beacon Press.ISBN 978-0-8070-7919-5.
  103. Jump up^ Boswell, John (1980). Christianity, social tolerance, and homosexuality: Gay people in Western Europe from the beginning of the Christian era to the fourteenth century. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
  104. Jump up^ Hudson, WW; Ricketts, WA (1980). “A strategy for the measurement of homophobia.”.Journal of Homosexuality 5 (4). pp. 357–72. doi:10.1300/J082v05n04_02ISSN 0091-8369.OCLC 115532547PMID 7204951.
  105. Jump up^ Jung, Patricia Beattie; Smith, Ralph F. (1993). Heterosexism: An Ethical Challenge. State University of New York Press. ISBN 0-7914-1696-8.
  106. Jump up^ “Avis au public”. Granddictionnaire.com. Retrieved 2010-09-03.
  107. Jump up^ Herek GM (1990). “The context of anti-gay violence: Notes on cultural and psychological heterosexism”. J Interpers Violence 5 (3): 316–33. doi:10.1177/088626090005003006.
  108. Jump up^ Herek, Gregory M. (2000). “The psychology of sexual prejudice”Curr Dir Psychol Sci 9.
  109. Jump up^ Banks, James A. (2012-05-24). Encyclopedia of Diversity in Education. SAGE. pp. 1093–.ISBN 9781412981521. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  110. Jump up^ Patterson, Eric (2008-03-31). On Brokeback Mountain: Meditations About Masculinity, Fear, and Love in the Story and the Film. Lexington Books. pp. 42–. ISBN 9780739121658. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  111. Jump up^ Warhol-Down, Robyn; Herndl, Diane Price (2009-11-30). Feminisms Redux: An Anthology of Literary Theory and Criticism. Rutgers University Press. pp. 196–. ISBN 9780813546209. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  112. Jump up^ O’Donohue, William; Caselles, Christine (September 1993). “Homophobia: Conceptual, definitional, and value issues”J Psychopathol Behav Assess 15 (3).
  113. Jump up^ Byers, Dylan. “AP nixes ‘homophobia’, ‘ethnic cleansing'”. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  114. Jump up^ Page, Clarence (5 December 2012). “Words with negative power”Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  115. Jump up^ Michelson, Noah (5 December 2012). “Huffington Post discussion”Huffington Post. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  116. Jump up^ Rainey, James (28 November 2012). “No more ‘homophobia’? AP raises the question”Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 December 2012. Baltimore Sun language authority John McIntyre described it as “reasoned, principled, and wrong-headed,” while National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association President Michael Triplett advocates terms such as “LGBT rights opponents”
  117. Jump up^ Frank, Nathaniel (27 November 2012). “The Associated Press Bans Homophobia”Slate. Retrieved 16 December 2012. Nathaniel Frank of Slate suggested that “In pursuit of accuracy, the standard-setters (got) it wrong” and that Minthorn’s words were “oddly amorphous phrases for a standards editor”.
  118. Jump up to:a b c Raymond J. Noonan (November 6, 1999). “Heterophobia: The Evolution of an Idea”. Dr. Ray Noonan’s 1999 Conference Presentations. Retrieved November 25, 2012.
  119. Jump up^ Kinsey, Sex and Fraud: The Indoctrination of a People. An Investigation Into the Human Sexuality Research of Alfred C. Kinsey, Wardell B. Pomeroy, Clyde E. Martin, and Paul H. Gebhard by Judith A. Reisman and Edward W. Eichel
  120. Jump up^ The Complete Dictionary of Sexuality by Robert T. Francoeur
  121. Jump up^ White, Stephen M. and Franzini, Louis R. (1999). “Heteronegativism? The attitudes of gay men and lesbians toward heterosexuals. Journal of Homosexuality”. Journal of Homosexuality37 (1): 65–79. doi:10.1300/j082v37n01_05.

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