Inaccurate! UWI lecturer rejects US human rights report on dancehall and homosexuality
University lecturer and cultural researcher, Dr Donna Hope-Marquis, says a US government report claiming that dancehall culture perpetuates widespread homophobia in Jamaica is inaccurate.
In its opening paragraph on the issue of sexual discrimination, the 2014 human rights report linked harassment, violence and discrimination against homosexuals with Jamaica’s anti-gay laws and the dancehall culture.
Regarding dancehall, the US government noted the influence of songs and the behaviours displayed by some musicians.
However, Dr Hope-Marquis says the assertions are flawed and more research was needed.
According to her, the report failed to note that anti-gay lyrics and behaviour have significantly declined in recent years.
Dr Hope Marquis also says the US report ignores the role of various factors such as religion and gender in analysing the negative attitudes of Jamaicans towards homosexuality
Last year the University of London produced a study claiming that dancehall music promotes homophobia and can lead to anti-social behaviour.
US Secretary of State, John Kerry released the human rights report last week.