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“Ghosts from the past”: The re-emergence of internalised religious stigma following diagnosis of HIV among Northern Irish gay men

Green, G and Kerrigan, K (2018) '“Ghosts from the past”: The re-emergence of internalised religious stigma following diagnosis of HIV among Northern Irish gay men.' Journal of Homosexuality. ISSN 0091-8369

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Abstract

This paper explores how previous exposure to religious homo-negativity features in the sense making process following HIV diagnosis in a homogenous sample of six gay men living in Northern Ireland. Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis was used to identify two key overarching themes: ‘Negotiating authenticity in unsafe space’ which relates to the experience of negotiating same sex attraction within religious environments and ‘Re-emergence of religious shame in diagnosis’ which relates to the way in which the men made sense of diagnosis from the position of having been exposed to religious homo-negativity earlier in their lives. Findings demonstrate how the men negotiated their sexual orientation within religious contexts and how a reconstruction of God was necessary to preserve an authentic sense of self. Despite reaching reconciliation, HIV was initially appraised within a retributive religious framework that served to temporarily reinforce previously learned shame-based models of understanding this aspect of the self.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: HIV, gay men, religion, stigma, Northern Ireland
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Health and Social Care, School of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2018 14:24
Last Modified: 16 Jan 2019 02:00
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/21061

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