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What's Queer about Europe?Productive Encounters and Re-enchanting Paradigms$
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Mireille Rosello and Sudeep Dasgupta

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780823255351

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823255351.001.0001

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Queering European Sexualities Through Italy’s Fascist Past

Queering European Sexualities Through Italy’s Fascist Past

Colonialism, Homosexuality, and Masculinities

Chapter:
(p.81) Queering European Sexualities Through Italy’s Fascist Past
Source:
What's Queer about Europe?
Author(s):

Sandra Ponzanesi

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823255351.003.0005

The promise of exotic and sensuous experiences lured European men away to the colonies. The colonies were also seen as a space of sexual liberation for people who did not fit European sexual norms. Within Europe, the responses to sexual dissidence have been far more diverse than acknowledged till now. In the case of Italy, the belated colonial experience in Eastern Africa coincided with fascist propaganda that cultivated a model of masculine virility. Yet the cult of the exposed healthy and athletic body harboured some contradictions. The chapter analyses the colonial response to same-sex relationships in the colonies, including the question of racial difference. A consideration of the racial and sexual politics in colonial East Africa will also be linked to contemporary theorizations of sex tourism, before the essay closes with an evaluation of how the above analyses might help reshape Queer Theory and an imaginary of Europe.

Keywords:   Italy, Colonialism, East Africa, Fascism, Masculinity

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