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Homosexuality in Africa

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An interesting report has just come up on the SciDev network about homosexuality in Africa, the connected article is well worth reading. You can find it here:


I am always amazed by people who tell me that there is no history of homosexuality in Africa. They mostly seem to be people who are part of the African diaspora, especially Jamaicans and African Americans. Anybody who has spent any time studying African history will have come across the evidence for homosexual activity within the Zulu Impi, the courts of the Kings of Benin not to mention the reports on the practices of the Central African tribes.

Homosexuality was always a major part of African life and culture, it is Western Churches that have driven it underground, especially American Baptist Missionaries.

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I have just finished reading the actual report mentioned in the article. You can find it here:

a highly anticipated report

It is well worth reading. I particularly found the following be to interesting and something that should be disseminated, especially amongst some of the Christian groups:

The study explores and could find no evidence that same-sex orientation can be changed through ‘conversion’ or ‘reparative’ therapy. It highlights that 50 years of research have not found same-sex attraction to be inherently pathological or a malady of any kind. Studies have also not been able to show any particular social harm of consensual relationships between adults, nor any negative impact on broader communities. Given the documented dangers of such therapy and its direct conflict with medical ethics, these interventions are contra-indicated. Further, recognising the ineffectiveness of conversion therapy, we recommend the wide dissemination of this information especially to health professionals across Africa and beyond.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I find interesting that countries and cultures that did not have a tradition of opposing same sex sexual encounters such as India and Uganda have clung fiercely to laws imposed on them by the British colonials regimes.

It did not take the Baptists Fundamentalist preachers visiting Uganda long to fire up everyone to the point where they increased penalties on laws already put in place by the British even though there is no history of the prohibition of this in pre-colonial Africa or Hindu India. I would remind you that they were screaming for blood!

Could it be that it was a product of a Victorian ideal of what was a requirement to be civilized?

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