ABSTRACT

In this final chapter, I complete the ethnographic portion of my study by analyzing a series of maps and related conversational exchanges offered by interviewees that illustrate how they visually and linguistically delineate sexual citizenship on the French urban landscape. My analysis focuses primarily on maps drawn by gay male interviewees and illustrates the tensions that emerge between the Anglo-American practice of naming sexuality in a tradition of identity politics and the French refusal to name particular identities, as associated with the republican tradition of universalism and integration, and a queer French tradition inspired by “Genet.” The focus on gay male respondents is due largely to the overall gender distribution among participants (30 gay men and 10 lesbians) as well as to the distribution of those who agreed to draw maps (23 gay men and 5 lesbians). Nevertheless, I also integrate a brief discussion of maps and first-person narratives by lesbians to illustrate their understanding of public urban space. Furthermore, I compare maps drawn by French citizens of European background with those drawn by French citizens of Sephardic and Maghrebi (NorthAfrican) origin who represent distinct traditions, as well as patterns of immigration and assimilation. The goal in this regard is to examine how discourses related to ethnicity, religious difference, and race also help shape French discussions of same-sex identity, belonging, sexuality, and space. As we have seen throughout Queer French, the globalization of gay identity and culture translates unequally across national borders; in this final chapter, we see how this process also occurs unevenly among the various constituencies that coexist within a specific (urban) locale.