Bequeathed Legacies: Colonialism and State led Homophobia in Uganda

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Kalemba Kizito


British colonial involvement in Uganda, and continued western political and economic influence over the affairs of the global south, warrants critical examination if proper context of the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill is to be understood. In response to the question, how did colonial legacy contribute to state led gendered violence against sexual minorities in Uganda? I advance the argument that authoritarianism and surveillance are both constitutive of colonial and imperial identity and practice, and that the violent attitudes towards gendered and sexual minorities in Uganda are a colonial inheritance. Using critical historiography, I argue that gendered violence, and homophobic attitudes in Uganda cannot be divorced from the seams of Western patriarchy and masculinisms cultivated through the export of legal and religious values. By arguing that surveillance historically was and continues to be a tool for imperial authority to superimpose itself upon formerly colonized territories, I hope to contribute to scholarship in surveillance studies that underscores the utility of history to critiques of the present day divide between western nations and third world former colonial territories.




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