Arabs, Gays, and Modernity: How Joseph Massad Promotes Homophobia
Hussein Ibish, of the American Task Force on Palestine, hasHossein Ibish written a thoughtful and, I think, important essay about the controversy surrounding Joseph Massad and gay rights in the Arab countries.
This is partly in response to those on the American right who seem more eager to tar Massad with the label of homophobia (and indeed antisemitism) than consider the underlying issues, and also in response to Massad’s insulting attack on Helem, the Lebanese gay rights organisation, which I reported here in December.
Massad’s argument, put very simply, is that the gay/straight binary is a creation of the west, which the west has exported through colonialism and neocolonialism – and which should therefore be opposed. He claims that this, rather than anything in Arab societies themselves, is the cause of homophobia and attacks on sexual minorities in the Middle East.
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