Tim Warburton’s doctoral dissertation From AIDS to Assimilation: Representations of Male Homosexuality in Swedish Literature (University of Washington, 2014) describes – as you can gather from its title – which cultural expressions of homosexuality were favoured and which were criticised, not to say dismissed and persecuted, in post-AIDS crisis’ Sweden. It’s an immensely interesting story, one in which Destroyer plays an integral part.
Warburton zooms in on how the gay program Böglobbyn on Swedish public service TV dealt with Destroyer (which is also described in my book Gay Man’s Worst Friend):
Although he is openly gay, Hilton’s tone during the voiceover of the program was disdainful and condemning; his presentation of Destroyer in Böglobbyn conveyed the message that respectable gay voices like his wanted nothing to do with Destroyer.
Warburton uses Gayle Rubin’s theory of sexual hierarchy to analyse the harsh condemnation of Destroyer:
The anxious need to maintain the line between good and bad sex drives the tension in the discourse surrounding Destroyer. The drawing of this line is demonstrated by gay rights voices like Johan Hilton, who have much to benefit politically, socially, and economically when this line is clear and pronounced.
The tension along the culturally determined barrier between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ sexual expressions is demonstrated in the scandal of Destroyer magazine and the outrage it sparked within gay rights debates.
I think he’s right on the spot, and I’m happy that Destroyer’s role in “gay” politics – or to be more exact: Destroyer’s virtue of illuminating the less flattering sides of “gay” politics – is being brought to academic light again.
If you want to read the dissertation, it can be found in all academic library systems, for example here:
The chapter about Destroyer is called “Cultural Amnesia of the AIDS Crisis” and starts on page 129. It’s well worth a read! The rest of the dissertation also seems interesting, but I haven’t read it in full yet.
Yes, Destroyer has been the subject of academic research before. The thesis The Beautiful Boy, The Destroyer: Sexradikalers förhandlingar om tidskriften Destroyer (in Swedish) was written by Reb Kerstinsdotter at Stockholm University in 2008. (Destroyer reported.) It is also referenced in Warburton’s dissertation.
Note to Swedish readers: My Swedish book Bögarnas värsta vän (2010) contains a detailed chronology of the Destroyer scandal. Buy it here in print or as a download. It is also available (to a higher price) at all major book and ebook retailers such as Adlibris, Bokus, Dito …
Our web host contacted us some time ago and asked us to remove certain content if we wanted to stay. They specified the content as “images which are legal but which we can’t defend morally”.
Fair enough, I think. If you want to be hosted by a web hotel, with all the advantages that come with that, you have to play by their rules. The alternative is to level up to an own server, VPS or physical, which is above my own technical knowledge level (I tried once) and which is also much more expensive. So I removed some old folders with legal images, and the host confirmed that everything was more than ok. (“We didn’t even find anything borderline, so you can stay without problems”, they wrote.)
In the end I asked why this request came now, after several years of smooth operation. The abuse officer replied that they had got “numerous complains from international organisations working against child porn”.
Jesus. What if those organisations actually devoted their resources to, say, working against child porn? Instead of trying to close down legitimate sites like mine – not only completely legal but with a strong artistic and political focus? Wouldn’t that be better for everyone? Not least the children? Oh, as if these orgs cared about those little rascals. Yeah, I know. Silly me to suggest such a possibility. Sorry!
(And if you think that we’re cowards and that we should have stood up for ourselves: No. I save that battle for my publications. The way I sell them was always a compromise, as it should be. Put the energy where it belongs.)
Thanks for the tip, aljoshka!
False paedophile claims
A 44-year-old man in the UK has been detained after falsely accusing people he didn’t like of being paedophiles. The Examiner writes:
One of his victims, a schoolteacher, has been unable to return to work because of the false allegations made by the 44-year-old.
The 44-year-old also experimented with calling people “terrorists”, but, of course, “paedophile” was more effective.
The 13-year-old boy who went on a killing spree on a school in Barcelona, Spain, was stopped by the school’s PE teacher, David Jurado Fernandez, who is now rightly hailed as a hero.
He describes what happened:
I got closer and closer to him and then he collapsed, I hugged him and he began to cry like the child he is and like the child I taught.
A friend described this as a “man/boy balance”. Male teachers, and especially the PE teacher, are sometimes the only authority that troubled boys will respect, love and be loved by. There is a unique dynamic to the man/boy relationship, which is beneficial not only to the boy and man in question, but to society at large. If only this troubled boy had been “picked up” by a man who could see and love him before he turned to weapons and killing. But usually, those important men are the same as those we fire from the schools and send to jail. And then society is shocked when another boy turns to violence – will people ever see the connection?
Protesters urge BBC to revise history
The documentary “Glad to be gay” was first shown on BBC in 1976. It contains interviews with gay people. One of them – in fact, the presenter – was Ian Dunn, who also was one of the founders of Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE). In the 1970s, the word gay included such groups and people too.
Now in 2015, BBC has put up the 30-minute documentary on their website, in a series of vintage documentaries about gay life. Some groups protest against this, since the documentary, according to Daily Mail, “portrays Dunn as a legitimate gay rights activist and makes no reference to his role in setting up the reviled group”.
“This is horrifying and shows complete contempt for those who suffered at the hands of Ian Dunn and other members of PIE”, a woman from the organisation One In Four says to Daily Mail.
Who it was that “suffered at the hands of Ian Dunn” was not specified, nor were any references to trials or court decisions made. Dunn himself could not defend himself against the sweeping accusations, since he died in 1998. (Lex Friend, Gajdusek, et al.)
BBC, meanwhile, has refused to take the show off their website, stating to Daily Mail: “This video – which doesn’t involve or discuss any children – was considered a significant programme on gay rights and has been online for many years.”
It’s funny how these groups grab after even the slightest thing that does not conform to their worldview. Now they want to revise gay history, to pretend the gay movement was founded by the same kind of harmless married churchgoing same-age couples that are running it (rather cynically and/or ignorantly) today.
Link to the video. (Can’t be watched from a Swedish IP location, and I couldn’t get it to work with a random UK proxy either. Maybe people with real UK IP addresses have better luck? Also available on this link, though I can’t get that one to play either. Can it be that BBC actually did “axe” the show? Maybe longtime reader Rimmer can enlighten us?)
Oops, Russia did it again
Remember when Russia covered the penis of the Apollo statue at the Bolshoi Theatre? (Destroyer reported.) Well, the art censors are at it again, this time at the Mezhdunarodnaya metro station in Saint Petersburg:
Photo tip by Rinrin from this article in Russian.
Kiddy porn surge
Swedish media report that the number of reported online child porn crimes in Sweden has doubled since 2012, up to 918 reports in 2014.
I guess more mothers are reporting their daughters for damaging the family’s honour by sending their boyfriends hot photos of themselves on Snapchat.
Two eras, two adventures:
Ready for a third?
What the internet wants:
What the internet gets:
Don’t miss Dzhokhar Tsarnaev part 1, as a young teen.
After starring together with a man in Karate Kid at age 11, Jaden grew into a young heartbreaker with the girls at 14 and 15:
Karate Kid is shown on German tv tonight (Kabel Eins). Nothing beats Ralph Macchio and Pat Morita in the original. But still …