Sexual Identity in India - Rountable Discussion

The past decade has rendered salient changes to what it means to be a man who has sex with other men (MSM) in India. A collision of indigenous, post-colonial, and modern Western forces, along with a rapid but disparate rise in wealth and power, has fostered substantial transformations in social and sexual mores. The recent repeal of Penal Code 377 and the first male to male "Bollywood kiss" are tangible manifestations of the empowerment that these transformations have brought. Yet Western thought and tradition surrounding homosexual identity and behavior, including the heterosexual/homosexual dichotomy itself, is increasingly recognized as a poor framework for understanding male sexuality in India.

The rountable discussion, "Sexual Identity, Health and Stigma in India: Traditional Statuses and Western Influences," furthered current discourse around the forces that shape the lives of MSM in India today by addressing critical influences relevant to male sexual identity and health in modern India. An international panel of distinguished scholars from diverse fields including anthropology, sociology, economics and medicine met on Saturday, August 13, 2011 at 9:30 a.m. CDT (8:00 p.m. IST) for a lively discussion hosted by the University of Chicago, and the event was available to a global audience through a live and interactive webcast. The event featured members of SSA's STI/HIV Intervention Network (SHINE).

Click here to read a full transcript of the panel discsussion. Note that the transcript is quite long, and is divided into four web pages.

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