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Secret Writings of Hoshang Merchant$
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Hoshang Merchant and Akshaya K. Rath

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199465965

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199465965.001.0001

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A Gay Lexicon

A Gay Lexicon

(p.191) A Gay Lexicon
Secret Writings of Hoshang Merchant

Hoshang Merchant

Oxford University Press

Before we discuss sexuality in the Indian context, we have to define Indian terms for homosexuality that can be used in the international discourse. Most of these words are abuses or derogatory but just like the word ‘queer’ or ‘black’ in the West, these old words are used proudly by India’s liberated gays to gain self-respect. This section introduces the words yaraana, ardhanarishwar, koti/panti, hijra, laundébaaz, and positions them in modern queer narratives.

Keywords:   gay lexicon, Christian guilt, IPC 377, homoeroticism in Hindi films, homosexuality vs samalingan, gay NRI movements, postmodernity–bisexuality, slave-ships’ sex-changed gods, boy-love, origin of hijras at Mecca

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