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    Romantic Relationships and Their Social Context Among Gay/Bisexual Male Youth in the Castro District of San Francisco


    Strong, Thomas (2007) Romantic Relationships and Their Social Context Among Gay/Bisexual Male Youth in the Castro District of San Francisco. Journal of Homosexuality, 53. pp. 1-29. ISSN 0091-8369

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    Abstract

    This article examines the culture of romantic relationships among gay/bisexual male youth in the Castro District of San Francisco.The article seeks to specify the cultural ideology that informs these relationships, drawing upon ethnographic observation, autobiographical accounts, and informant cultural exegesis. The article also seeks to link thinking and experience inside romantic relationships (e.g., bonding, jealousy) to patterns of social behavior associated with romantic relationships (e.g., relationship sequestering, cheating), showing how both are informed by shared assumptions which make these emotions and gestures intelligible to the group. Beliefs about love, compatibility, and monogamy are explored. Reciprocity, including its degradation into negative forms, is examined with focus on the units of value that are exchanged in romantic relationships, in particular sentimental gifts. Gestures of commitment that mark commencement of a romantic relationship as well as extension of the dynamics of a relationship after “breakup” (as in “revenge sex” and “rebound relationships”) are examined. Cultural systems that challenge adherence to a romantic ideology, such as a prestige economy associated with sex linked to an ethos of sexual exploration/recreation, are weighed against the pull of romance. “Drama,” a hallmark of gay youth, is viewed in the context of romantic culture.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Romantic Relationships; Gay/Bisexual; Male Youth; Castro District; San Francisco;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Anthropology
    Item ID: 8389
    Depositing User: Dr. Thomas Strong
    Date Deposited: 28 Jun 2017 15:05
    Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Homosexuality
    Publisher: Taylor & Francis
    Refereed: Yes
    URI:

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