Family and Homosexuality in Chinese Culture: Rights Claims by Non-heterosexuals in Hong Kong


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7 Citations (Scopus)


Family of origin is one of the less-studied areas to have been investigated during the rights-claiming process by non-heterosexuals. This paper discusses how family of origin plays a significant role in the claiming of rights (such as the authority to make health care or medical treatment, funeral arrangement and inheritance) by non-heterosexuals in Hong Kong. Because of the functional specificities of Chinese families and their perceptions of homosexuality, Chinese non-heterosexuals are eager to introduce their sexuality to their family of origin rather than participate in a more separated approach to coming out. This process constitutes a “coming home” approach to coming out as a member of a gender or sexual minority group. The negative effects of exclusion and ignorance not only affect the mental health of non-heterosexuals in Hong Kong but also shape and create social barriers to the claiming of rights. Findings from this study reveal that family of origin is a significant factor deterring non-heterosexuals from considering, planning or taking action to claim sexual citizenship rights.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)845-859
Number of pages15
JournalSexuality and Culture
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2017

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Cultural Studies

User-Defined Keywords

  • Chinese culture
  • Family
  • Hong Kong
  • LGBT
  • Non-heterosexuals
  • Rights


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