Gay men at work: a qualitative study of workplace anti-gay violence in St. John's, Newfoundland

Courtney, Joseph C. (2003) Gay men at work: a qualitative study of workplace anti-gay violence in St. John's, Newfoundland. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

This research project explores the gay male experience with violence in paid employment in St. John's, Newfoundland. Researchers have paid scant attention to the range of violences in work organizations that are directed at gay men because of victims' sexual orientation. The literature on anti-gay violence tends to ignore or minimize the experiences of gay men in paid employment. This thesis is an attempt to help remedy this gap in knowledge. -- Interviews were conducted with twenty-two, self-identified gay men. The sample was obtained in a non-random fashion. The research instrument consists of ninety-four open- and closed-ended questions. Respondents report personal experience with a variety of anti-gay violences in paid employment based on sexual orientation. These violent acts include verbal insults and epithets; threats of various sorts including death threats and threats of physical violence; physical assault and sexual assault. Respondents claiming personal experience with anti-gay violence also report negative mental health consequences: reports of fear, intimidation, anger and low self-esteem were common. -- The author advances a complex theoretical model to explain and understand the social problem that is workplace anti-gay violence. It is argued that heterosexist sentiment, disclosure of sexual orientation, structural features of work organizations and power imbalances may interact and give rise to incidents of violence against gay men at work. I also argue for a structural analysis of anti-gay violence in paid employment. The data suggest that incidents of anti-gay violence in work organizations are not random. A number of possible risk factors have been identified. These risk factors or correlates include employment in the hospitality-service industry, employment in mostly private sector workplaces, and employment in managerial positions.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/7051
Item ID: 7051
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 108-119.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Sociology
Date: 2003
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--St. John's
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Homophobia--Newfoundland and Labrador--St. John's; Heterosexism--Newfoundland and Labrador--St. John's; Violence in the workplace--Newfoundland and Labrador--St. John's

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