The Media Relations of the Russian LGBT-Movement after the Ban of "Gay Propaganda": Discursive Opportunities and Constrains

Diana Imamgaiazova
2016 European Journal of Social and Human Sciences   unpublished
Homosexuality had long been silenced in the Russian political arena and mainstream media (Kondakov 2013), and thus, queer activists worked in a very limited public space. The situation had changed after the ban of so-called "gay propaganda" and the simultaneous campaign for "traditional values" in Russia (Wilkinson 2014). The rise of discussion around homosexuality, initiated by the Russian political elites, can be viewed as a discursive opportunity for queer activism (Persson 2015; Pronkina
more » ... n 2015; Pronkina 2016). The current study examined the media relations of the Russian LGBT groups since the adoption of the "gay-propaganda" law. The predictions about discursive opportunities for the Russian LGBT movement were made with reliance to the Koopmans' (2004) theory and Seal's (2013) study of the feminist political protest in Russia. The mass survey of activists (N=132) was conducted for revealing the media strategies and claims of the Russian LGBT movement. It was found that the branch of politically mobilised LGBT activists tried to utilise the discursive opportunities for their protest in spite of the "gay-propaganda" ban in Russia. The rest of the activists followed conservative media strategies avoiding excessive publicity.