The Homosexual(ity) of Law

By Leslie J. Moran | Go to book overview

6

POLICING AND THE PRODUCTION OF THE HOMOSEXUAL(ITY) OF LAW

INTRODUCTION

Any attempt to study policing as a complex technology of production that incites, extracts, distributes and institutionalizes the homosexuality of law has to address a general problem. Until recently the police (like other agents of law) have been in a privileged position with respect to the production of the male genital body in its genital relations with other male bodies in law. This privileged position can be explained in various ways. First, it is a position that reflects the fact that, as agents of the law, the police have not only been duly authorized to deploy the limited lexicon of the law through which this body of the law might be imagined, but have also developed the practices whereby this lexicon might be deployed on a day-to-day basis. Second, the privileged position of policing reflects the fact that access to the lexicon of the law was also access to the silence of the law. This has produced particular effects. Policing has played a central role on the more general production of the male genital body in its genital relations with other male bodies, creating and enforcing silences at the same time as producing an immense verbosity by way of the official lexicon of the law. This has particular consequences for a study of policing. For example, until recently, public access to information about practices of policing was very limited. It was largely confined to the official reports of cases contained in the law reports and more generally in media reports of police operations or court proceedings. In addition it must also be recognized that these records of police practices produced this male body of law in a particular way. Here it is a body produced by way of a specific lexicon and a body that is made sense and nonsense of by way of particular schemata of knowledge that produce that body as a criminal body, a pathological body and a marginal body.

Only in the relatively recent past has this state of affairs changed. To a large extent this change has come about as a result of the creation of homophile organizations. In the UK these homophile organizations have collected and documented the experiences of those who have become the object of these police techniques of production and subjection. These organizations include the Homosexual Law Reform Society (later the Sexual Law Reform Society) (Grey 1992); the 118

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The Homosexual(ity) of Law
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • 1 - Introduction 1
  • Part I - The Lexicon of the Law 19
  • 2 - Novelty as the Tradition of Law 21
  • 3 - Buggery 33
  • 4 - Making the Sense of Buggery 66
  • Part II - The Homosexual(ity) of Law 89
  • 5 - The Enigma of ‘homosexual Offences’ 91
  • 6 - Policing and the Production of the Homosexual(ity) of Law 118
  • 7 - The Somatic Techniques of Policing 134
  • 8 - The Uses of Homosexuality 169
  • 9 - Conclusions 197
  • Appendix of Cases 203
  • Notes 204
  • Bibliography 234
  • Index 244
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