In 2004, the first same-sex couple legally married in Quebec. How did homosexuality – an act that had for centuries been defined as abominable and criminal – come to be sanctioned by the rule of law?
Judging Homosexuals finds answers to this question not in recent developments but in a comparative analysis of homosexuality in France and Quebec, places that share a common culture but have diverging legal traditions. To explain why attitudes shifted from acceptance, if not valorization, in ancient Greece to vilification under Judeo-Christian authorities and then back to acceptance today, Patrice Corriveau examines how various groups and actors – family and clergy, doctors and jurists – have tried to manage people who were defined in turn as sinners, as criminals, as inverts, and as citizens to be protected by law.
By bringing to the forefront the various discourses that have supported the control and persecution of individual homoerotic behaviour in France and Quebec, this book makes the case that when it came to managing sexuality, the law helped construct the crime.
Judging Homosexuals has a clear thesis and is logically organized. The translator has done an excellent job in making specialized academic discussion understandable in a second language. The book is highly readable and should prove to be of value to not only academics in a number of disciplines such as history, criminology and gender studies, but also undergraduates.
Patrice Corriveau is an associate professor in the Department of Criminology at the University of Ottawa and a researcher with the Interdisciplinary Research Laboratory on the Rights of the Child and the Sexual and Gender Diversity: Vulnerability, Resilience. Käthe Roth has been a literary translator, working mainly in historical non-fiction, for more than twenty years. She lives and works in Saint-Lazare, Quebec.
Foreword / Barry Adam
1 Ancient Greece to the Seventeenth Century: From Pederasty to Sodomy
2 The Grande Ordonnance of 1670 to the British Conquest: The Sodomist and the Stake
3 The British Conquest to the Late Nineteenth Century: From the Sodomist to the Invert, or From the Priest to the Physician
4 The Late Nineteenth Century to the Sexual Revolution: From Invert to Homosexual
5 The 1970s to the Present: From Prison to City Hall
Conclusion: From One Sexual Perversion to Another?
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