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The debate on homosexuality mediated by social representations: homosexual and heterosexual perspectives / O debate sobre a homossexualidade mediado por representa es sociais: perspectivas homossexuais e heterossexuais

Keywords: Homosexuality , social representations , social recognition , causality

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The objective of this work was to study the social representations of homosexuality among college students, according to sexual orientation and sex. One free association question about the word homosexuality and another about is possible causes were answered. The data was analyzed according to the principles of content analysis. There were significant differences among the groups, allowing us to find out different ways of understanding/dealing with homosexuality and facing prejudice/discrimination. The homosexual men publicly justified/legitimated (rights, freedom) homosexuality with the argument/representation that it is uncontrollable/natural, while the homosexual women preferred to build and improve interaction agreements on the interpersonal level (family, love affair) to obtain social recognition. Yet the heterosexual men and women, with many references to normality and others contents that reinforce the social conventions, pointed out less possibility of recognition towards homosexuality.


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