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Heterosexualism And Heterosexism

Decent Essays
Heterosexism, according to Warren J. Blumenfeld, is the system of advantages given to heterosexuals based on the social construct of gender roles and heterosexual norms, while marginalizing and oppressing homosexuals and others who do not fit into the heterosexual culture (373). The enforcement of this system is known as heteronormality. This is seen in the binary system, which is a social construct that divides people into different strictly bordered categories organized by “social roles, values, stereotypes, and behavioral and attitudinal imperatives, expressions, and expectations” (Blumenfeld 373). Those who stick to the binary system, maintain power and privilege. People who may live in the binary system, but also intentionally…show more content…
Then there is the interpersonal level. This level is letting prejudice (personal bias) manifest into discrimination. Then the institutional level, which is “the government, businesses, and educational, religious, and professional organizations systematically discriminating on the basis of sexual identity” (Blumenfeld 381). Blumenfeld uses the fact that homosexuality was considered a disorder up until 1973, as an example of homophobia on the institutional level. Lastly, homophobia works on a cultural level through the “social norms or codes that … [are put in place] within a society to legitimize oppression” (Blumenfeld 382). Then, Warren J. Blumenfeld goes on to list the many ways homophobia hurts, not only the LGBTQ community, but everyone. Some being, it restricts the ability of heterosexuals to form relationships with people of the same sex out of fear of homosexuality; it creates strict gender roles that people must abide by, which creates unfairness; it makes herterosexual people treate people of the LGBTQ community badly which corrupts their humanity; and it strains family relationships.

In, “The interSexion: A Vision for a Queer Progressive Agenda” by Deepoli Gokhale, she writes about queer oppression. She defines heterosexism as the “belief that there are only two genders, and that a sexual relationship between a man and a
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