Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To search for a specific phrase…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Did you write an article’s title and the article did not appear in the search results? Or do you want to find a specific phrase within the article? Go to the Search section and write the title or phrase surrounded by quotations marks in the “Search for Words or Phrases in Context” area.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Layton, L. (1998). Was We'Wha a Homosexual? W. Roscoe. GLQ. II, 1995. Pp. 103-235. Psychoanal Q., 67(2):343-344.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Was We'Wha a Homosexual? W. Roscoe. GLQ. II, 1995. Pp. 103-235

(1998). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 67(2):343-344

Was We'Wha a Homosexual? W. Roscoe. GLQ. II, 1995. Pp. 103-235

Lynne Layton

Roscoe, a cultural historian of the Zuni “two-spirit” We'Wha, was asked if We'Wha was a homosexual. Roscoe's concern is that the constriction of “homosexual” to same-sex love has made contemporaries unable to see links between themselves and these non-Western ancestors who conceived of themselves as third and fourth gender beings. The article examines the cross-influence between “two spirits,” European explorers who lived among them and catalogued their existence,

- 343 -

and European discourses that drew on the ethnographies for various purposes (the moral discourse that justified conquest on the basis of inferiority; the discourse that saw the two-spirits as monsters or prodigies; the medical-scientific discourse of the mid- and late nineteenth century that understood them as examples of disease). Roscoe's thesis is that cultural influences between Native Americans and Europeans always go both ways. Thus, those who first used the term “homosexuality” in nineteenth century discourses were not only aware of “two-spirits” but cited and, in some cases, agreed with their self-conceptualizations, which focused on third gender status and not on desiring sex with one's own gender. On reviewing homosexual activism, we see again an expansion of gender categories; therapeutic discourse might this time around refrain from pathologizing and instead allow for a multiplicity that goes beyond male or female.

- 344 -

Article Citation

Layton, L. (1998). Was We'Wha a Homosexual?. Psychoanal. Q., 67(2):343-344

Copyright © 2020, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.