Heterosexism and Homophobia
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This paper examines how the articles "The Heterosexualization of the Ontario Women Teacher in the Postwar Period" by S. Cavanagh (2006) and "Rethinking Class in Lesbian Bar Culture: Living 'The Gay Life'" by S. Chenier (2006) both discuss the ways in which heterosexism and traditional gender norms had an impact on single women, both gay and straight, during the post-war twentieth century. It looks at how throughout Canadian history, many unmarried teachers in the post-war period and lesbians in the mid-twentieth century in Toronto struggled with discrimination and the challenge of securing jobs and how living outside of traditional gender norms resulted in discrimination and had negative economic impacts on both groups of women. It also discusses how in their articles, Cavanagh and Chenier explore these issues through personal interviews, tabloids, court actions and jail records.
From the Paper:"Single women were preferred as teachers over married women during the early 1900's. The single woman was seen as non- sexual and morally fit. The 'celibate' woman teacher was seen as, "inducing a similar state of being upon her students" (Cavanagh 2006, 285). Cavanagh explains how married women, who were operating within traditional gender norms, were now seen as natural, with predisposition to love and care for children. The married women were thought to project a heterosexual behavior to her students, unlike the single 'celibate' women. Once the marriage bar was lifted in 1946 intolerance for homosexuality became more present, as Cavanagh states, "the single woman teacher came to be defined....sexually inverted, deviant, and queer" (2006, 284). Celibate single women teachers were no longer allowed to continue teaching. "
Sample of Sources Used:
- Cavanagh, S. The heterosexualization of the Ontario women teacher in the postwar period. In Rethinking Canada: the promise of women's history, 5th edition, ed. Mona Gleason and Adele Perry, 224-241. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2006.
- Chenier, S. "Rethinking class in lesbian bar culture: living 'the gay life' in Toronto, 1955-1965" In Rethinking Canada: the promise of women's history, 5th edition, ed. Mona Gleason and Adele Perry, 224-241. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2006.
- Nielson, C. WMST 2241 Heterosexism & Homophobia. Nov 4, 2008. Humanities Dept. MRC. Nov 10, 2008.
Cite this Article Review:
Heterosexism and Homophobia (2009, February 10) Retrieved December 20, 2014, from http://www.academon.com/article-review/heterosexism-and-homophobia-112047/
"Heterosexism and Homophobia" 10 February 2009. Web. 20 December. 2014. <http://www.academon.com/article-review/heterosexism-and-homophobia-112047/>