Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Creating Moral Authority and Collective Action Frames: Christian Pulpit Monologues in the Ex-Gay Movement
by Schmidgall, Darci, M.A., Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, 2013, 112; 1549839
Abstract (Summary)

The Christian ex-gay movement was born in 1973 with the founding of Exodus International, which would soon become an international umbrella ministry purporting reparative "ex-gay" therapies as a viable method of dealing with "unwanted same-sex attractions". In 2012, then-president of Exodus, Alan Chambers, renounced reparative therapies in recognition of the wide-spread harm they had caused. In June of 2013, Chambers announced his intention to close Exodus' doors. Aspects of minority discrimination inherent to the broader Christian sex prescription and mirrored in the Christian ex-gay movement are discussed, along with the influence of the Post-Victorian conceptualization of sexuality on ex-gay ideology, the social movement ideologies driving the reparative therapeutic model, and the ex-gay and pro-gay Christian hermeneutics of the queer-relevant Biblical canon. In its final days, Exodus International served as a methodological tool to discern ex-gay collective action frames. The present research purposively sampled Exodus Association member churches and qualitatively analyzed the framing work performed by Exodus Association pastors in sermons addressing homosexuality. The data was coded according to the core collective action framing tasks conceptualized by David Snow and Robert Benford: diagnosis, prognosis, and motivation. A clear division among the churches emerged as themes from the "pulpit discourse" unfolded, one faction emphasizing truths and objectifying the issue of homosexuality, and the other faction emphasizing grace and humanizing homosexuals as people. The division of member churches of the now-dead Exodus Association into truth and grace perspectives is discussed as a reflection of the splintering of the larger ex-gay movement.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Markowitz, Linda
Commitee: Davis, Georgiann, Hedley, Mark
School: Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville
Department: Sociology and Criminal Justice Studies
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: MAI 52/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Religion, Epistemology, GLBT Studies, Organizational behavior
Keywords: Alan chambers, Ex-gay movement, Exodus international, Queer christianity, Reparative therapy, Same-sex attraction
Publication Number: 1549839
ISBN: 9781303629143
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