The Ins and Outs of Homophobia

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Organised by:

British Psychotherapy Foundation

27 March 2024

Time: 18:30 - 19:30

Price: Free

Location: online


Full Title: The Ins and Outs of Homophobia and Gay Men’s Experiences of Holding Hands in Public

For many LGBTQ people, who are in a same-sex relationship, holding hands with their partners in public is seldom a carefree and spontaneous act. Many LGBTQ people have reported fearing possible verbal and physical abuse from others for engaging in public displays of affection. This talk will explore the role of homophobia and internalised homophobia in gay men’s experience of navigating the act of holding hands with their partners. The talk uses case studies, drawn from research data which was generated through Photovoice interviews and include verbal as well as visual material. The analysis of the interview material follows a psychosocial approach, considering both the social dimensions of experience as well as drawing on psychoanalytic theory to consider the psychological dimensions. This talk will examine some of the psychological struggles involved when negotiating internal and external barriers to holding hands.

Dr Poul Rohleder is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalytic psychotherapist, and member of the British Psychotherapy Foundation. He had for many years pursued an academic career, where he was an active researcher, most recently at the Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies at the University of Essex, where he now holds an honorary position. He was principal investigator, together with 2 colleagues, on a British Academy funded research project exploring LGBTQ people’s experiences of holding hands in public with their partners. He has published a number of books and academic papers on matters of sexuality and marginalised identities. He was awarded the Bernard Ratigan Award for Diversity in Psychoanalysis by the British Psychoanalytic Council in 2021. He has a full-time private practice in central London and teaches on a number of clinical trainings.

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