Relationship between religion and non-heterosexuality: A study of lesbian, gay and bisexual people of diverse religions in China

Yiu-Tung SUEN, Randolph Chun Ho CHAN

Research output: Contribution to journalArticles

Abstract

An established scholarly literature, largely generated from North America and Europe, highlighted intolerance experienced by lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people in some mainstream religious traditions such as Christianity and Islam. However, very little research has examined the lived experiences of LGB people who identify as followers of other religions in other parts of the world. The study examined the self-reported experiences of 2,681 LGB people of diverse religions in China, where any data on the group has been extremely rare because homosexuality and religion are both topics officially sanctioned. It was found that a larger proportion of LGB people of traditional Chinese religions assessed their religious doctrines to be more LGB-accepting and reported that their religious workers and fellow believers were more LGB-welcoming, as compared with their Christian and Muslim counterparts. LGB people of traditional Chinese religions were also less likely to experience negative treatment in the religious community than Christians. However, the majority of the Chinese LGB people surveyed did not disclose their sexual orientation to members of their religious community, and this did not differ significantly across religions. The study contributes to the research literature by diversifying the understanding of the relationship between religion and non-heterosexuality. Copyright © 2020 The Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Sex Research
Early online dateJul 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Jul 2020

Citation

Suen, Y.-T., & Chan, R. C. H. (2020). Relationship between religion and non-heterosexuality: A study of lesbian, gay and bisexual people of diverse religions in China. Journal of Sex Research. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/00224499.2020.1782316

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