“Illegal Loves and Sexual Deviancy: Homosexuality as a Threat in Cold War Canada”
This paper analyzes the criminalization and medicalization of homosexuality during the early twentieth century in Canada. Through court records and medical texts the discourse of homosexuality as a threat to the family unit and to the nation is contextualized within Cold War rhetoric. A Foucaultian conceptualization of power and discipline helps frame questions regarding homosexuality as a criminal offense and as a mental illness. It is argued that both state control and societal pressures constructed the homosexual as criminal, the homosexual as mental patient and, as a result, the homosexual as Communist threat.